Etymology
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breakdown (n.)

also break-down, 1832, "a collapse, a falling apart," from the verbal phrase (attested by late 14c. in the sense "take down by breaking" (trans.); 1831 in the intransitive sense "come down by breaking; 1856 as "to fail through incapacity, excess emotion, etc."); see break (v.) + down (adv.). The noun, specifically of machinery, is from 1838; meaning "an analysis in detail" is from 1936 (from the verbal phrase in the sense "analyze, classify," 1934). Also in 19c. American English "a noisy, lively dance sometimes accompanied by singing" (1864). Nervous breakdown is from 1866.

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Definitions of breakdown

breakdown (n.)
the act of disrupting an established order so it fails to continue;
his warning came after the breakdown of talks in London
Synonyms: dislocation
breakdown (n.)
a mental or physical breakdown;
Synonyms: crack-up
breakdown (n.)
(biology) the process of decay caused by bacterial or fungal action;
Synonyms: decomposition / rot / rotting / putrefaction
breakdown (n.)
a cessation of normal operation;
there was a power breakdown
Synonyms: equipment failure
breakdown (n.)
an analysis into mutually exclusive categories;
Synonyms: partitioning
From wordnet.princeton.edu