is the act of breaking apart a two-dimensional material by force, without the aid of a cutting tool
. A tear
in a piece of paper
, or some other similar object may be the result of the intentional effort with one's bare hands or accidental. Unlike a cut
, which is generally on a straight or patterned line controlled by a tool such as scissors
, a tear is generally uneven and for the most part, unplanned. An exception is a tear along a perforated line
, as found on a roll of toilet paper
or paper towels
, which has been previously partially cut so the effort of tearing will likely produce a straight line.
Materials vary in their succeptibility to tearing. Some materials may be quite resistant to tearing when they are in their full form, but when a small cut or tear is made, the material becomes compromised, and the effort of continuing to tear along that line becomes easier.