Definition of odds in English:

odds

Line breaks: odds
Pronunciation: /ɒdz
 
/

noun

1The ratio between the amounts staked by the parties to a bet, based on the expected probability either way: Nicer is starting at odds of 8-1 it is possible for the race to be won at very long odds
More example sentences
  • At odds of 16-1, and with White displaying splendid form throughout the first five days of action, it began to look like very prescient gambling.
  • Use of the Whipple Bumper is expected to reduce the odds of a collision to one in ten.
  • As illustrated by the odds ratios, the odds of rearrest for traditionally adjudicated offenders are two times those of drug court participants.
1.1 (usually the odds) The chances or likelihood of something happening or being the case: the odds are that he is no longer alive the odds against this ever happening are high
More example sentences
  • In another, the odds against chance were calculated to be 10 11 to 1.
  • If this does not happen the odds are that the Mountmellick TD could be on his way out of Leinster House.
  • And when that happened the odds are that we would lose both the building and the local provision of services.
Synonyms
likelihood, probability, chances, chance, balance
1.2 (usually the odds) The balance of advantage; superiority in strength, power, or resources: she clung to the lead against all the odds the odds were overwhelmingly in favour of the banks rather than the customer
More example sentences
  • He chose Duan Qirui, who thus, on 24 November 1924, came back to power against all the odds.
  • Fair play to them both, they took on what was a mountainous challenge and now against all the odds have emerged victorious.
  • Against all the odds Keble extended their lead to 17-3 and, despite a mini-revival from Brasenose they held on to this advantage at half time.
Synonyms
advantage, lead, edge, superiority, supremacy, ascendancy

Origin

early 16th century: apparently the plural of the obsolete noun odd 'odd number or odd person'.

Phrases

at odds

In conflict or at variance: his behaviour is at odds with the interests of the company
More example sentences
  • But conflict resolution in recent decades is at odds with the principled approach.
  • She had felt different and increasingly at odds with her family, in particular her mother Fanny.
  • That guidance is clearly different from and at odds with the 1972 decision letter.
Synonyms
in conflict, in disagreement, on bad terms, at cross purposes, at loggerheads, quarrelling, arguing, clashing, at daggers drawn, at each other's throats, at outs, estranged;
North American on the outs
at variance, not in keeping, out of keeping, out of line, out of step, in opposition, conflicting, clashing, disagreeing, differing, contrary, incompatible, contradictory, inconsistent, irreconcilable, incongruous, discrepant

by all odds

North American Certainly.
More example sentences
  • By 8: 15 in the morning, when Bob had deposited the last of his magazines on the departmental porter's desk for mailing, he should by all odds have been tired.
  • Of course, by all odds he should be dead, but he isn't.

it makes no odds

informal , chiefly British It does not matter: come and see me any time—it makes no odds to me!
[from an earlier use of odds in the sense 'difference in advantage or effect']
More example sentences
  • I try not to eavesdrop but it makes no odds anyway - his conversation is peppered with indecipherable tycoon-speak references to share prices and dotcoms.
  • You can make all the money in the world available, but it makes no odds if you haven't got the talent.
  • Creels or computers, it makes no odds: just different endings to the same old song.

lay (or give) odds

Offer a bet with odds favourable to the other better: bookies have refused to give odds on the outcome of today’s debate
More example sentences
  • There has been an average of four Irish-trained winners over the last ten years and bookmaker Paddy Power is giving odds of 7-2 on this happening again.
  • Paddy Power Bookmakers is presently laying odds of 25/1 against Vintage Tipple winning the Arc.
  • Since he was now a chess god, he could only find games for money if he gave odds.
Be very sure about something: I’d lay odds that the person responsible is an insider
More example sentences
  • I would lay odds that it will begin in the next 48 hours.
  • One phrase we'll lay odds on you will hear tonight is flip-flop.
  • And I'll lay odds that it has something to do with the grand opening of the fishery on Saturday.

over the odds

British Above what is generally considered acceptable, especially for a price: you could be paying over the odds for perfume
More example sentences
  • It may be a challenging task given that rival insurers claim the price paid was over the odds.
  • I resign myself to paying over the odds, and remind myself that this is still an outrageously low sum.
  • We already suffer by paying over the odds for Insurance due to excessive and fraudulent claims.

take odds

Offer a bet with odds unfavourable to the other better: you might be tempted to take odds on a dead heat
More example sentences
  • It's therefore worth investigating, in practical terms, how much difference taking odds really makes.
  • One simply lays or takes odds on the team he expects to win the game.
  • There are bookmakers already taking odds that Mr. Lewis, like Muhammad Ali in 1979, will soon retire from this retirement and be back in the ring.

what's the odds?

informal What does it matter?
[from an earlier sense of odds; compare with it makes no odds]
More example sentences
  • What's the odds of getting at least one marble from the multiple pot scenario?
  • What's the odds of flipping a coin and coming up heads?

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Word of the day bimble
Pronunciation: ˈbimbəl
verb
walk or travel at a leisurely pace