adjective ad·verse \ad-ˈvərs, ˈad-ˌ\

: bad or unfavorable : not good

Full Definition of ADVERSE

:  acting against or in a contrary direction :  hostile <hindered by adverse winds>
a :  opposed to one's interests <an adverse verdict> <heard testimony adverse to their position>; especially :  unfavorable <adverse criticism>
b :  causing harm :  harmful <adverse drug effects>
archaic :  opposite in position
ad·verse·ly adverb
ad·verse·ness noun

Examples of ADVERSE

  1. <all the adverse publicity really caused the movie star's popularity to suffer>
  2. <the adverse effects of the drug are too severe to allow it to be marketed>
  3. The Bankruptcy Code requires that debtor's counsel be disinterested and not have an interest adverse to the estate. —Lawyers Weekly USA, 4 Oct. 1999

Origin of ADVERSE

Middle English, from Anglo-French advers, from Latin adversus, past participle of advertere
First Known Use: 14th century
ADVERSELY Defined for Kids


adjective ad·verse \ad-ˈvərs\

Definition of ADVERSE for Kids

:  acting against or in an opposite direction <adverse winds>
:  not helping or favoring <adverse circumstances>
ad·verse·ly adverb <Bad weather adversely affected attendance at the fair.>


Next Word in the Dictionary: adverse possessionPrevious Word in the Dictionary: adversativeAll Words Near: adverse
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears