To brake is to stop. The noun brake is the pedal in the car that stops the vehicle when pressed. When you want to brake, step on the brake)!
In Middle English breken meant things that stopped others, such as a bridle for a horse. If your bicycle screeches at the bottom of every hill, maybe you should have the brakes checked. French Poet Paul Valery saw a brake as a stopping agent for more than just a vehicle: “Man's great misfortune is that he has no organ, no kind of eyelid or brake, to mask or block a thought, or all thought, when he wants to.”