“Broken” is an adjective that means “shattered” or “damaged.”
(An adjective describes a person, place, or thing.)
- The toy is broken.
- He has a broken toy.
- The bone is broken.
- I have a broken bone.
“Broke” can be used in two ways:
1. “Broke” can be an adjective that means “without money.”
- I lost my job. Now I am broke. (I do not have any money.)
- He cannot pay for dinner because he is broke. (He does not have any money.)
- The broke company lost their business. (The company does not have any money.)
- The toy broke yesterday.
- He broke a bone when he fell out of the tree last week.
- The cat broke the vase last night.
To review, let’s use this sentence as an example:
“I break a mirror.”
“Break” is a verb.
The past tense form of “break” is “broke.”
“I broke a mirror yesterday.”
In this sentence, “broke” is a verb in the past tense.
I cannot say, “The mirror is broke.”
That is incorrect. “The mirror is broke” would mean that the mirror does not have any money!
I should say, “The mirror is broken.”
Remember, when “broke” is used as an adjective, it means you are penniless or without money.