adversarial

adjective

ad·​ver·​sar·​i·​al ˌad-vər-ˈser-ē-əl How to pronounce adversarial (audio)
ˌad-və-,
-ˈse-rē-
: involving two people or two sides who oppose each other : of, relating to, or characteristic of an adversary or adversary procedures (see adversary entry 2 sense 2)
an adversarial relationship
an adversarial system of justice with prosecution and defense opposing each other

Example Sentences

an adversarial system of justice with prosecution and defense opposing each other the relationship between the president and the congress should not be adversarial if anything is to get done
Recent Examples on the Web The suspensions hint at a growing adversarial relationship between Musk and Twitter users who have expressed skepticism of his motives for making changes. Daniel Arkin, NBC News, 7 Nov. 2022 Are blatantly fake emails from an adversarial government actually representative of election meddling in 2020? Rita Katz, Wired, 30 Oct. 2020 But, Backman added, a death-penalty trial is ultimately adversarial, and the defense is not required to make the job easy for the prosecution or the judge. Rafael Olmeda, Sun Sentinel, 17 Sep. 2022 Regardless of how adversarial the employer-employee relationship may be, contract negotiations begin after every successful vote. Paolo Confino, Fortune, 14 Sep. 2022 But other lawyers in Trump’s circle — who have argued for taking a more adversarial posture in dealing with the Justice Department — disagreed with Kise’s approach. Maggie Haberman, BostonGlobe.com, 6 Oct. 2022 Commerce is responsible for ensuring that advanced U.S. technologies don’t go to adversarial countries. Yuka Hayashi, WSJ, 6 Sep. 2022 That coincided with Washington’s push to wean off imports from adversarial countries - extracting and processing lithium has been cheaper in South America and China - and rising demand from EV makers. Daniel Moore, Anchorage Daily News, 6 Sep. 2022 The model, for instance, may misunderstand the intent behind identity terms, failing to differentiate between benign and adversarial prompts. Stephanie Mlot, PCMAG, 26 Aug. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'adversarial.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1839, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of adversarial was in 1839

Dictionary Entries Near adversarial

Cite this Entry

“Adversarial.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/adversarial. Accessed 2 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

adversarial

adjective

ad·​ver·​sar·​i·​al
ˌad-vər-ˈser-ē-əl
: involving two people or two sides who oppose each other

Legal Definition

adversarial

adjective

ad·​ver·​sar·​i·​al ˌad-vər-ˈser-ē-əl How to pronounce adversarial (audio)
: of, relating to, or characteristic of an adversary or adversary procedures : adversary

More from Merriam-Webster on adversarial

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