animosity

noun
an·​i·​mos·​i·​ty | \ ˌa-nə-ˈmä-sə-tē How to pronounce animosity (audio) \
plural animosities

Definition of animosity

: a strong feeling of dislike or hatred : ill will or resentment tending toward active hostility : an antagonistic attitude

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Choose the Right Synonym for animosity

enmity, hostility, antipathy, antagonism, animosity, rancor, animus mean deep-seated dislike or ill will. enmity suggests positive hatred which may be open or concealed. an unspoken enmity hostility suggests an enmity showing itself in attacks or aggression. hostility between the two nations antipathy and antagonism imply a natural or logical basis for one's hatred or dislike, antipathy suggesting repugnance, a desire to avoid or reject, and antagonism suggesting a clash of temperaments leading readily to hostility. a natural antipathy for self-seekers antagonism between the brothers animosity suggests intense ill will and vindictiveness that threaten to kindle hostility. animosity that led to revenge rancor is especially applied to bitter brooding over a wrong. rancor filled every line of his letters animus adds to animosity the implication of strong prejudice. objections devoid of personal animus

Where does the word animosity come from?

The important Latin word animus (very closely related to anima) could mean a great many things having to do with the soul and the emotions, one of them being "anger". As an English word, animus has generally meant "ill will", so it isn't mysterious that animosity means basically the same thing. Animosity can exist between two people, two groups or organizations, or two countries, and can sometimes lie hidden for years before reappearing. The deep animosities that exist between certain ethnic and religious groups sometimes seem as if they will last forever.

Examples of animosity in a Sentence

Few rivalries can match that of the Cards and Cubs in terms of history, color and animosity. Things are tense in an off year, but in 2003 the teams are at the top of the National League Central division (along with the Houston Astros), separated by a half-game. — John Grisham, New York Times Book Review, 1 May 2005 As I get older, I have noticed the troubles many of my friends have with their fathers: the animosities and disappointments, held so long in the arrears of late adolescence, suddenly coming up due on both ends. But my father and I, if anything, have gotten closer, even as I understand him less and less. — Tom Bissell, Harper's, December 2004 What I did not anticipate, however, was the depth of animosity that had been simmering among the teachers beneath the pleasantries that characterized our public, formal encounters. I discovered that my enthusiastic advocacy for whole language was received by traditional teachers as demeaning, insulting attacks. — Elaine Garan, Language Arts, September 1998 We put aside our personal animosities so that we could work together. his open animosity towards us made our meeting very uncomfortable
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Recent Examples on the Web The extremists have moved from the arid north to more populated central Mali since 2015, stoking animosity and violence between ethnic groups in the region. Washington Post, "US calls for smaller UN force in Mali, Russia says no change," 16 Jan. 2020 Their presence there has stoked animosity and deadly violence between ethnic groups amid suspicions of supporting the jihadists. Baba Ahmed, San Diego Union-Tribune, "UN peacekeeper killed, 5 others seriously wounded in Mali," 7 Oct. 2019 Commemoration activists from the region blame a varying mix of factors, including nationalist revisionism, anti-Semitism, a lack of funds, personal animosities and incompetence. Cnaan Liphshiz, sun-sentinel.com, "In Eastern Europe, Holocaust museums are missing from key historical sites," 30 July 2019 There should have been no animosity toward Al Horford in his return to TD Garden because his departure worked out well for both sides. BostonGlobe.com, "Horford gave his all in his three seasons in Boston, but he made it clear why he left: A chance to win now. A chance to play with two of the league’s top 15 players and a chance to play power forward a majority of the time.," 14 Dec. 2019 In 2018 William Nordhaus, his longtime colleague—and rival, although there was no animosity between them—won the Nobel prize in economics for his work on the costs and benefits of acting to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. The Economist, "Martin Weitzman died on August 27th," 5 Sep. 2019 Now, the growing personal animosity between Bolsonaro and Fernández is threatening that stability. Washington Post, "Personal animosity between Argentine, Brazilian leaders complicating relations between South America’s largest economies," 9 Dec. 2019 The impeachment of a president a year out from a presidential election, with all the animosity and chaos that would bring, is serious business. John Kass, chicagotribune.com, "Column: The ‘Whistleblower’ and Rep. Adam Schiff should be first to testify in Trump Impeachment Theater," 8 Nov. 2019 Even by the vicious standards of British Parliament, the animosity of the clashes was shocking. Luke Mcgee, CNN, "British politics has been taken over by trolls," 26 Sep. 2019

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

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First Known Use of animosity

1568, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for animosity

Middle English animosite, from Middle French or Late Latin; Middle French animosité, from Late Latin animositat-, animositas, from Latin animosus spirited, from animus — see animus

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Time Traveler for animosity

Time Traveler

The first known use of animosity was in 1568

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Statistics for animosity

Last Updated

3 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Animosity.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/animosities. Accessed 21 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for animosity

animosity

noun
an·​i·​mos·​i·​ty | \ ˌa-nə-ˈmä-sə-tē How to pronounce animosity (audio) \
plural animosities

Kids Definition of animosity

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