Tampered vs Broken vs Teared

I recently bought a book from an online site. Some papers were “broken”. I want to send feedback to the online retailer. How can I say it correctly: “tampered” or “broken” or “teared”? Please help me to create a feedback mail.


Neither broken nor tampered make sense in your case. You would use torn, which is the correct form of your suggested "teared".

If you take a piece of paper and rip it in half, that piece of paper is torn. The paper is also torn if only small pieces are missing, or even if the paper remains connected after the tear.

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From the dictionary definition of broken you would think it fits in your situation:

broken, adj.

  1. Forcibly separated into two or more pieces; fractured: a broken arm; broken glass.

But it doesn’t. Note that the two examples are of items that would snap or shatter. A vase can be broken, but a book can’t… A book can be ripped or torn or damaged, but it simply isn’t idiomatic to say it’s broken. This is what comes to mind when using broken in this sense:

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As for tampered, you definitely don’t want to use that.

tampered, v. intr.

  1. To interfere in a harmful manner: tried to tamper with the decedent’s will; tampering with the timing mechanism of the safe.

When you say something has been tampered with (note the with, that’s required) that means that you are accusing the company of intentionally modifying/changing/damaging the product before sending it to you. I don’t imagine this is what you think happened, so I don’t think this is the word you’re looking for.

So, for a sentence to explain what you need to tell them…

Some of the pages in my book are torn.

So torn would work fine, but most people would probably just say the book was damaged, and then add further detail if they thought it necessary:

When my book arrived it was damaged; several of the pages were torn, and [insert anything else wrong with the book here].

Source : Link , Question Author : anish , Answer Author : WendiKidd

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