Romper in Spanish: Conjugations, Meanings & Uses

In this short guide, we will cover the following topics for ‘romper’ in Spanish:

  1. What does ‘Romper’ mean?
  2. ‘Romper’ Conjugations
  3. How to Use ‘Romper’ in Spanish
  4. Expressions & Idioms with ‘Romper’
  5. Synonyms of ‘Romper’ in Spanish

What does ‘Romper’ mean?

In Spanish, ‘romper’ is used to describe that an object was shattered or broken into pieces. It can also express the end of a romantic relationship. Although it is the direct translation of ‘to break‘, depending on the object that you are referring to, ‘romper’ can have multiple variations.  

  1. When talking about destroying, breaking or shattering objects, ‘romper’ means ‘to break, ‘to rip’ or ‘to tear’.
  2. In Spanish, ‘romper’ can also be used to express that a body part was broken. In this case, it is translated as ‘to break’, ‘to smash’, ‘to cut’ or ‘to bust’.
  3. If used to describe that a romantic relationship has come to an end, ‘romper’ means ‘to break up’.

‘Romper’ Conjugations 

In Spanish, ‘romper’ is a regular verb. As a result, the stem rompwill not change when conjugating, with the exception of the future and conditional tenses, whereas the stem is the verb in its infinitive form.


Present tense conjugation

YoRompoI break
RompesYou break
Él / Ella / UstedRompeHe/She break
NosotrosRompemosWe break
VosotrosRompéisYou break
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasRompenThey/You break

Preterite tense conjugation

YoRompíI broke
RompisteYou broke
Él / Ella / UstedRompHe/She broke
NosotrosRompimosWe broke
VosotrosRompisteisYou broke
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasRompieronThey/You broke

Imperfect tense conjugation

YoRompíaI broke
RompíasYou broke
Él / Ella / UstedRompíaHe/She broke
NosotrosRompíamosWe broke
VosotrosRompíaisYou broke
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasRompíanThey/You broke

Future tense conjugation

Keep in mind that for the future and conditional tense you’ll need to work with the verb as a whole.

YoRomperéI will break
RomperásYou will break
Él / Ella / UstedRomperáHe/She will break
NosotrosRomperemosWe will break
VosotrosRomperéisYou will break
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasRomperánThey/You will break

Conditional tense conjugation

PersonConjugation Translation
YoRomperíaI would break
RomperíasYou would break
Él / Ella / UstedRomperíaHe/She would break
NosotrosRomperíamosWe would break
VosotrosRomperíaisYou would break
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasRomperíanThey/You would break

Progressive Tenses

conjugation chart showing how to conjugate romper in progressive tenses

Perdón, tengo que colgar, mi hija está rompiendo los vasos.
Sorry, I have to hang up, my daughter is breaking all the cups.

¿Por qué estabas rompiendo el pantalón de tu hermana?
Why were you ripping your sister’s jeans?

Perfect Tenses

graphic showing how to conjugate romper in spanish indicative perfect tenses

Michael Phelps ha roto un nuevo récord mundial en los Juegos Olímpicos.
Michael Phelps has broken a new world record at the Olympics.

Cuando me caí de las escaleras, pensé que me había roto una pierna.
When I fell down the stairs, I thought I had broken my leg.

Take Note: As mentioned above, ‘romper’ is a regular verb, with the exception of its past participle form.

Romper Subjunctive Conjugations

Present subjunctive conjugation

YoRompaTo break
RompasTo break
Él / Ella / UstedRompaTo break
NosotrosRompamosTo break
VosotrosRompáisTo break
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasRompanTo break

Imperfect subjunctive conjugations

YoRompiera / RompieseI broke
Rompieras / RompiesesYou broke
Él / Ella / UstedRompiera / RompieseHe/She broke
NosotrosRompiéramos / RompiésemosWe broke
VosotrosRompierais / RompieseisYou broke
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasRompieran / RompiesesThey/You broke

Perfect subjunctive

graphic showing how to conjugate romper to the perfect subjunctive in spanish

No puedo creer que hayas roto con David, parecían perfectos.
I can’t believe you broke up with David, you guys seemed perfect for each other.

Si no hubieras roto el jarrón de la abuela, no estaríamos en problemas.
If you hadn’t broken Grandma’s vase, we wouldn’t be in trouble.


Imperative conjugation

The stem for the imperative conjugation is romp, however, to conjugate this verb in its negative imperative form, and vosotros follow the present subjunctive conjugation.

NosotrosRompamosLet’s break

[‘Romper’ imperative] + [complement]

Rompe con tu novio si no estás feliz con la relación.
Break up with your boyfriend if you are not happy in the relationship.

No + [‘romper’ in present subjunctive] + [complement]

Ten cuidado, no rompas nada.
Be careful, don’t break anything.

How to Use ‘Romper’ in Spanish with Examples

There are three main ways in which the verb ‘romper’ is used in Spanish. The sections below will help you understand in which contexts you can use this verb and what phrase structures to follow.

  1. Talking about breaking objects
  2. To describe injuries
  3. To talk about ending a romantic relationship

Talking about breaking objects

When talking about material things, ‘romper’ means ‘to break’. However, the translation could change a little bit depending on the characteristics of the object. For example, when talking about clothing or paper, it can be translated as ‘to rip’ or ‘to tear’.

[‘Romper’ conjugated] + [complement]

Mi hermano rompió mi taza favorita.
My brother broke my favorite mug.

Eres muy descuidado, rompes todo lo que tocas.
You are very careless, you break everything you touch.

Los gatos rompieron las cortinas.
The cats tore the curtains.

As mentioned at the beginning of this article, ‘romper’ can also be applied to immaterial things in a figurative sense. This way of using ‘romper’ follows the same phrase structure shown above.

[‘Romper’ conjugated] + [complement]

Elizabeth rompió su promesa.
Elizabeth broke her promise.

No me gusta jugar contigo, siempre rompes las reglas.
I don’t like playing games with you, you always break the rules.

To describe injuries

‘Romper’ can also be used to talk about body parts, and as a result, it is almost always used to describe that someone broke a bone. In this case, you’ll need to use ‘romper’ as a pronominal verb by adding a reflexive pronoun.

(Noun) + [Indirect pronoun] + [‘romper’ conjugated] + [complement]

Julia se rompió la mano jugando tenis.
Julia broke her hand playing tennis.

¡Ayuda! Creo que me rompí la pierna.
Help! I think I broke my leg.

El balón te rompió la nariz, vas a necesitar cirugía.
The ball broke your nose, you’re gonna need surgery.

Take Note: In some cases, you use ‘romper’ with this meaning to express that another person broke or cut someone’s body part. Therefore, in this situation, you’ll use an indirect pronoun. 

Saúl le rompió el labio a mi hermano. 
Saul cut my brother’s lip. 

To talk about ending a romantic relationship

When talking about a relationship that has ended, the verb ‘romper’ can be translated as ‘to break up’. For this situation, you’ll need to add the preposition ‘con’ after ‘romper’.

[‘Romper’ conjugated] + [con] + [noun]

¿Escuchaste que Gaby rompió con Daniel?
Did you hear that Gaby broke up with Daniel?

Estoy pensando en romper con mi novia.
I’m thinking about breaking up with my girlfriend.

¿Romperías con tu novio si te engañara?
Would you break up with your boyfriend if he cheated on you?

Romper Expressions & Idioms

There are some expressions that contain this verb and are frequently used in daily conversations. Knowing them will help you expand your vocabulary and develop your conversational skills.

No romper ni un plato is an expression describing someone that is very innocent and it’s frequently used in a sarcastic way. A similar expression in English could be ‘never hurt a fly’.

Romper la cara can be directly translated as ‘to break the face’. This expression is used as a threat, it warns someone that you’re going to hit them.

Romper el hielo means ‘to break the ice’. It’s used to describe someone easing the tension and creating a nice environment.

Romper a llorar describes a person that suddenly starts crying. It means ‘to burst into tears’.

Synonyms of ‘Romper’ in Spanish

Quebrar translates as ‘to break’ or ‘to crack’.

Terminar, in the context of a romantic relationship, means ‘to break up’.

Cortar is also used to talk about ending a relationship in more informal situations.

Daniela Sanchez

¡Hola! Soy Daniela Sanchez, I've been studying Spanish professionally as well as teaching it in Mexico and online for over 10 years. I’ve taught Spanish to a wide array of foreigners from many backgrounds. Over the years, I've made it my mission to work hard on refining many challenging to understand grammar topics to make my students' learning experiences easier, faster and more enjoyable. Read More About Me

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