Definition of adversary in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈadvərˌserē/

noun (plural adversaries)

1One’s opponent in a contest, conflict, or dispute: Davis beat his old adversary in the quarterfinals
More example sentences
  • He was a vigorous adversary to opponents, but he was also a very fair and honest man.
  • I believe he would prove to be a formidable adversary.
  • Once there, he expects to be coming up against an old adversary.
opponent, rival, enemy, antagonist, combatant, challenger, contender, competitor, opposer;
opposition, competition, foe
1.1 (the Adversary) The Devil.
Example sentences
  • Fasting combined with prayer is a powerful weapon against our adversary, the devil.
  • Speakers in Irish folklore conventionally refer to the devil as The Adversary.
  • Just what does this verse tell us about the fate of the Adversary?


another term for adversarial. the confrontations of adversary politics
More example sentences
  • Winner-take-all electoral systems and adversary politics result in truth being irrelevant.
  • Amendments to the Criminal Procedure law in 1996 introduced adversary elements to the fact-finding process in criminal trials.
  • You are not judges now, but advocates under this adversary system we have been discussing.


Middle English: from Old French adversarie, from Latin adversarius 'opposed, opponent', from adversus (see adverse).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ad·ver·sar·y

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