break of

break (one) of (something)

To stop one from doing a habitual action or activity. I was able to break my sister of biting her nails by regularly taking her to get a manicure with me. I need to learn how to break a toddler of tantrums because they are a common occurrence in our house these days.
See also: break, of
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

break someone or something of something

to cause someone or something to stop practicing a habit. We worked hard to break the dog of making a mess on the carpet. I don't think I can break her of the habit. Tom broke himself of biting his nails.
See also: break, of
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in classic literature ?
This was the pride of Dave as wheel-dog, of Sol-leks as he pulled with all his strength; the pride that laid hold of them at break of camp, transforming them from sour and sullen brutes into straining, eager, ambitious creatures; the pride that spurred them on all day and dropped them at pitch of camp at night, letting them fall back into gloomy unrest and uncontent.
The referee clutched each by the shoulder and sundered them violently, passing quickly between them as he thrust them backward in order to make a clean break of it.
There, in the back street he found one, the Break of Day.
The landlady having given her directions for the new guest's entertainment to her husband, who acted as cook to the Break of Day, had resumed her needlework behind her counter.
Even the two players at dominoes glanced up from their game, as if to protest against philosophical philanthropy being brought by name into the Break of Day.
(in this world here where I find myself, and even at the little Break of Day) that there are such people.
The landlady's lively speech was received with greater favour at the Break of Day, than it would have elicited from certain amiable whitewashers of the class she so unreasonably objected to, nearer Great Britain.
If your philosophical philanthropy,' said the landlady, putting down her work, and rising to take the stranger's soup from her husband, who appeared with it at a side door, 'puts anybody at the mercy of such people by holding terms with them at all, in words or deeds, or both, take it away from the Break of Day, for it isn't worth a sou.'
The company might have had other engagements, or they might have felt their inferiority, but in any case they dispersed by degrees, and not being replaced by other company, left their new patron in possession of the Break of Day.
The landlady of the Break of Day looked at him again, and felt almost confirmed in her last decision.
This the landlady of the Break of Day chirpingly explained, calling between whiles, 'Hola, my husband!' out at the side door.
When he started up, the Godfather Break of Day was peeping at its namesake.
John Bastow of Meltham Lib B had a 28, Brian Cousen of Lindley Lib had breaks of 36 and 35, Mathew Peaker of Brockholes BC made breaks of 44, 43, 39 and 33, Jack Dyson of Meltham Lib A recorded breaks of 45, 29 and 28, however, the highest break of the week came from David Peaker of Brockholes BC with a fine break of 56 against Rick Steer of Berry Brow Lib.
Where a working period lasts for more than six hours, an adult worker is entitled to an uninterrupted rest break of at least 20 minutes.
In this research in order to simplify, break of a soil dam due to armed attacks is considered as rectangular fracture and this assumption and its dimensions with regard to historical backgrounds and experiences is important in the field of terroristic attacks against soil dams through the world.