Definition of avert in English:

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Pronunciation: /əˈvəːt/


[with object]
1Turn away (one’s eyes or thoughts): she averted her eyes while we made stilted conversation
More example sentences
  • She averted her eyes, shifting her gaze to her feet in an attempt to avoid the mischievous curl of his lips.
  • You can chew on the irony of icon-maker MTV presenting this notion when you're averting your eyes during the extended surgery scenes.
  • Hard and social science will of course progress even though the Supreme Court averts its eyes.
turn aside, turn away, turn to one side
2Prevent or ward off (an undesirable occurrence): talks failed to avert a rail strike
More example sentences
  • ‘Treating and curing TB at first sign prevents its spread, averts death and reduces the burden TB patients place on the healthcare system,’ she said.
  • Can Africa mount a prevention campaign successful enough to avert an epidemic of Western proportions?
  • The far-fetched, last minute intervention, presumably by the hand of God, that averts tragedy from striking the family sits uncomfortably with the raw realism of the rest of the picture.
prevent, stop, avoid, nip in the bud;
stave off, head off, ward off;
forestall, preclude



Pronunciation: /əˈvəːtəb(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • It isn't just the imp of the perverse that suggests that a total wipeout for Microsoft is avertable.
  • If companies don't scan client data and an avertable disaster happens, then they could get sued by shareholders or even by the government for noncompliance with the USA Patriot Act.
  • Daly and deaths potentially avertable are for a 20 percentage point increase in intervention coverage in a hypothetical sample population of 1 million.


Late Middle English (in the sense 'divert or deter someone from a place or a course of action'): from Latin avertere, from ab- 'from' + vertere 'to turn'; reinforced by Old French avertir.

Words that rhyme with avert

advert, alert, animadvert, assert, Bert, blurt, Burt, cert, chert, concert, controvert, convert, curt, desert, dessert, dirt, divert, exert, flirt, girt, hurt, inert, insert, introvert, Kurt, malapert, overt, pert, quirt, shirt, skirt, spirt, spurt, squirt, Sturt, subvert, vert, wort, yurt

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: avert

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