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verb crack pronunciation in American English /kræk/
Word Forms
present tense
present participlecracking
past tensecracked
past participlecracked
  1. 1
    [transitive] to damage something so that a line or long narrow hole appears on its surface, but it does not break into pieces

    I dropped a plate and cracked it.

    She cracked several ribs and broke her arm skiing.

    1. a.
      [intransitive] if something cracks, a line or long narrow hole appears on its surface, but it does not break into pieces

      The ice was starting to crack at the edges.

      The egg cracked open and a little chick struggled out.

  2. 2
    [transitive] to deliberately break something open in order to get what is inside

    They used a hammer to crack open the coconuts.

  3. 3
    [intransitive] to make a short sudden loud noise like a small explosion

    Thunder cracked overhead.

  4. 4
    [transitive] to accidentally hit a part of your body against something with a lot of force

    Dad fell and cracked his head against the door.

    1. a.
      [transitive] to hit someone on the head with a lot of force

      She cracked him over the head with a frying pan.

      Synonyms and related words
  5. 5
    [transitive] to solve a complicated problem, or to find the answer to a mystery

    Detectives believe they are close to cracking the case.

    It was a code that seemed impossible to crack.

  6. 6
    [intransitive] to lose control of yourself and say or do things that you would not normally say or do, for example, because you are tired or you have been threatened

    Heston never cracked, even when they tortured him.

    crack under the pressure/strain:

    She won the game because her opponent cracked under the pressure.



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a derogatory word used for referring to people in the banking and investment industry who are thought of as taking serious risks in order to increase their own earnings …

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