English - Break (Broken)

Hebrew - בָּרַח  - Flee

The central common concept behind these Hebrew and English words is that of separation. If someone flees he separates himself rapidly from a group; if something is rapidly violently separated into parts it is broken.


Cognates in Hebrew show that the concept behind it served as a base for a whole family of words. The initial phoneme was P. In certain cases with usage this drifted over to B, as we see here. (I offer Strong's Exhaustive Concordance reference number in parenthesis.) For example,

פור, Pur means to crush or break (S6331).

פרא, Para means to bear fruit, as in dividing one self (S6500, S6509).

פָּרַד, Prad means to divide, separate (S6504).

,פָּרַח Prakh means to break forth, break out, to bloom, to fly, to flourish (S6524).

פרז, Paraz means to separate or decide wisely (6518).

פרך, Perek means to break apart, fracture, (S6531).

And so on.

This list illustrates word families found throughout Hebrew, with similar phonetics and related meaning, but rarely discussed by scholars. In all honesty, they simply do not know what to do with this phenomenon. Since they are tied intellectually to the notion of evolution they cannot conceive that the basic Semitic language was intelligently designed.

Note that the Hebrew first letter is shortened  from b'rakh to produce a close similarity in pronunciation to the European break. Note also that the final "kh" has followed a similar shift found in many other Teutonic cognates to an easier "k." This word has numerous nuances in meaning.

Old Frisian: breka
Old Saxon: brekan
Dutch: breken
Old High German: brekhan

(this form retains the guttural kh.)
Gothic: brikan
Old Teutonic: brek-
Old English: braec
The history of how the Latin frag-, to break in pieces, to shatter, is related to the common Teutonic form but origin is unknown. One can see the common connection in the modern English fragment and fracture. Through well recognized phoneme changes we know that the Latin p is related to the English f, (pater vs father).
From OED:

1. To sever into distinct parts by sudden application of force, to part by violence. Often with an adjunct indicating result, as in to break asunder, in pieces, small.

2. In various spec. uses, as  a. To rend or tear (cloth, paper). b. To cut up (a deer); to tear in pieces (a fox), also with up; to carve (a fowl), also with out, up

3. To destroy the completeness of; to take away a part from; to divide, part (a set of things). Spec. to change (a banknote or the like). to break with: to divide and share with.

4. In phrases: to break bread, to break a lance with, to break blows.

5. Said in reference to the rupture of a surface: To part or lay open the surface of (anything), as of land (by ploughing, etc.). Also to break up, see to break ground.

6. With regard chiefly to the state or condition produced: to break so as to disable, destroy cohesion, solidity, or firmness, crush, shatter.

7. To crush, shatter (e.g. a bone). to break the leg or arm.

8. to break the heart: to kill, crush, or overwhelm with sorrow.

9. of weather: to change suddenly, esp. after a long settled period.

10. To demolish, smash, destroy, ruin; to defeat, foil, frustrate (things material or immaterial); esp. to defeat the object of (a strike) by engaging other workers.

11. To ruin financially, make bankrupt (a person or bank).

12. To crush in spirit or temper; to discourage; to overcome, prevail upon.

13. to break one's mind (heart): to deliver or reveal what is in one's mind, to break news, a matter, a secret.

14. To violate, do violence to; to fail to observe or keep; to transgress.

15. Break and run: "to dash off, run," "to begin, open or change suddenly." (Note similarity to flee.)

From BDB:

go through, flee (Arabic go away, withdraw, flee)

Qal Pf. בָּרַח Gn 31:22 + 9 times, בָּֽרְחוּ Jb 9:25, בָּרָח֑וּ Is 22:3; Impf. יִבְרַח Jb 20:24, יִבְרָ֑ח Jb 27:22 Ne 6:11 וַיִּבְרַח Gn 31:21 + 13 times; 3 fs. וַתִּבְרַח Gn 16:6, אֶבְרָח֑ ψ 139:7, יִבְרְחוּ Je 52:7, וַיִּבְרְחוּ 2 S 4:3 + 4 times, נִבְרָחָ֑ה 2 S 15:14; Imv. בְּרַח Gn 27:43 + 3 times, בִּרְחוּ Is 48:20; Inf. abs. בָּרוֹחַ Jb 27:22; cstr. בְּרֹחַ 1 S 23:6 + 3 times, בְּרוֹחַ Jon 1:3; sf. בָּרְחִי 1 K 2:7, בָּרְחֲךָ Gn 31:5, בָּרְחוֹ Gn 35:7 + 2 times;

4. go or pass through, of bar, וַיַּעַשׂ אֶת־הַבְּרִיחַ … לִבְרֹחַ Ex 36:33.

5. flee Gn 31:20, 21, 22, Ex 14:5, Ju 9:21, 1 S 19:12, 18; 22:17 2 S 13:34, 37, 38, 15:14 Is 22:3 Je 4:29; 26:21; 39:4; 52:7 Ne 6:11; fig. of days fleeing away Jb 9:25; of man, like a shadow Jb 14:2; c. מִן flee from a place 1 S 20:1 2 S 19:10 ( + מֵעַל pers.) Is 48:20, a weapon Jb 20:24; a person, c. מֵאֵת 1 K 11:23, usually c. מִפְּנֵי Gn 16:6, 8; 31:27; 35:1,

6. flee = hasten, come quickly Ct 8:14.

7. Ex 2:15, Ju 11:3 2 S 21:11 1 K 2:7; 12:2 = 2 Ch 10:2 ψ 3:1; 57:1 (titles) 139:7 Jon 1:10; מִיַּד י׳ fig. Jb 27:22; flee to, c. acc. place 1 S 27:4 1 K 11:40 Ho 12:13; c. place & לְ Ne 13:10; c. place & הָ loc. Jon 1:3; 4:2 2 S 4:3; c. place & אֶל־ Nu 24:11 Am 7:12; c. אֶל־ & pers. 1 S 23:6 Gn 27:43 (J) 1 K 2:39 1 K 11:40; אַחֲרֵי & pers. 1 S 22:20; flee, sq. inf. 1 K 11:17 Dn 10:7.  

Hiph. Pf. הִבְרִיחוּ 1 Ch 8:13; Impf. יַבְרִיחַ Pr 19:26; sf. יַבְרִיחֶנּוּ Jb 41:20, וָאַבְרִחֵהוּ Ne 13:28, וַיַּבְרִיחוּ 1 Ch 12:15; Pt. מַבְרִחַ Ex 26:28;— 1. pass through, lit. Ex 26:28 (P) cf.

Qal. 2. cause to flee, put to flight, animal Jb 41:20, men 1 Ch 8:13; 12:16; drive away Pr 19:26 Ne 13:28 (sq. מֵעָלַי).

i. [בָּרִיחַ S1282 GK1377] adj. fleeing = בַּרִּיחַ ,נָחָשׁ בָּרִֽחַ׃ Jb 26:13 of eclipse-dragon, לִוְיָתָן נָחָשׁ בָּרִחַ Is 27:1; בָּרִיחִים Is 43:14 as fugitives; so prob. also Is 15:5 בריחיה, v. בְּרִיחַ.

The following is from the notes of Isaac Moseson, and The Word. (Not all citations may be valid.) I add references to Strong's Exhaustive Concordance.

BRANCHES: (He shows the Hebrew form with capital letters and the suggested vowels with small case.)

1)BeReG. Preserved in Arabic, this cognate of BRACE and BRACKET now infers screw and bolt in Modern Hebrew.

2) BaRaQ. (S1300) This is a bolt, FLICKER or broken line of lightning.

3) BeReK[H]. (S1288) This is the knee, which BREAKS the length of the leg. (The verb form is in Genesis 24:11). BRACHY- words are from Greek brachys (short), while the arm's BRACHIUM is the Latin source of many arm-like words. These include BRACE, BRACELET, BRACHIO- (prefix for arm words), BRACKET (if not from the Arabic term above), BRA(N)CH and BREECHES. PeReQ is a joint (bone).

4) PeLeG. (S6389) The FLOCK of words here includes BLOCK, BREAK, BRIGADE, FLAKE, FLUKE, FRACAS and PLUG. Consider that Genesis 10:25 may refer to the break up of earth's single land mass into continents; otherwise Peleg was named for the tribal BLOCKS that took shape and migrated apart in his era. The same Hebrew term is the "divide" of "divide their tongue" in Psalms 55:10. P’LooGaH is a division (II Chronicles 35:5). The IE (Teutonic) root bhreg (to break) includes BRACKEN, BRAKE, BRAH, BRAY, BREACH, BRECCIA, FRACAS, FRACTION, FRAC­TURE, FRAGILE, FRAIL, INFRACTION, INFRINGE, OSSIFRAGE, REFRACT, REFRAIN and SUFFRAGE.

5) FeLaK[H] (S6400) (piece, slice - I Samuel 30:12) is another FLAKE, FRACTION or FRAGMENT word.

6) PaLaK[H] or FaLa[K]H (S6398) (Psalms 141:7). This word refers to either the PLOUGH or the FELLOW who PLOWs.

7) PeLeK[]H (S6418) (Nehemiah 3:9). This spacial break off or partition means a district or PAROCHI(IAL) PLACE.

8) PeRaK[H] or FeRa[]KH. (S6524) The BREAKING out here is the kind FRECKLES and PLAGUES might do. There's also the FLIGHT, spreading out and blossoming of birds, flora and FRA­GRANCES. The budding sense comes from Genesis 40:10; spreading and "flourishing" is seen in Proverbs 14:11. Boils (perhaps bubonic plague) "breaks forth" in Exodus 9:9. EFRoaK[H] is a baby bird who breaks out of his shell; PaRaK[H] is to blossom or flower.

9) PaRoKHe(S). (S6532) The curtain of Exodus 26:31, this space breaker or partition is pargodus in Latin, and is nasalized as firanka in Polish. Old Norse balkr (partition) is one of several terms attributed to IE root bhelg. Some of these include BALCONY, BALK, BULK, FULCRUM and PHALANX.

10) PaRahKH. (S6531) Appearing in Exodus 1:13, but more evident as a splitting word in Aramaic, it breaks up into English words like FLAKE, FLUKE and FREAK.

11) PeReQ or PayRahQ (S6561) (Genesis 27:40) The definitions of this word infer BREAKING OFF or PARKING in a text (a chapter) as well as removal words like FLECK, FLEECE, FLICK and PLUCK. Via IE root piek (to tear) one might add FLAY, FLESH, and FLETCH.