avoid

verb
\ ə-ˈvȯid How to pronounce avoid (audio) \
avoided; avoiding; avoids

Definition of avoid

transitive verb

1a : to keep away from : shun They have been avoiding me.
b : to prevent the occurrence or effectiveness of avoid further delays
c : to refrain from avoid overeating
2 law : to make legally void (see void entry 1 sense 1a) : annul avoid a plea
3 archaic : to depart or withdraw from : leave
4 obsolete : void, expel

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Other Words from avoid

avoidable \ ə-​ˈvȯi-​də-​bəl How to pronounce avoid (audio) \ adjective
avoidably \ ə-​ˈvȯi-​də-​blē How to pronounce avoid (audio) \ adverb
avoider noun

Choose the Right Synonym for avoid

escape, avoid, evade, elude, shun, eschew mean to get away or keep away from something. escape stresses the fact of getting away or being passed by not necessarily through effort or by conscious intent. nothing escapes her sharp eyes avoid stresses forethought and caution in keeping clear of danger or difficulty. try to avoid past errors evade implies adroitness, ingenuity, or lack of scruple in escaping or avoiding. evaded the question by changing the subject elude implies a slippery or baffling quality in the person or thing that escapes. what she sees in him eludes me shun often implies an avoiding as a matter of habitual practice or policy and may imply repugnance or abhorrence. you have shunned your responsibilities eschew implies an avoiding or abstaining from as unwise or distasteful. a playwright who eschews melodrama

Examples of avoid in a Sentence

Why do you keep avoiding me? She took a detour to avoid the heavy traffic. They successfully avoided each other for days. He tried hard to avoid accidents. We need to avoid further delays. He was caught trying to avoid arrest. in an effort to avoid confusion I'm not going to be late if I can avoid it. How can I avoid paying too much tax? I am trying to avoid showing any hint of favoritism.
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Recent Examples on the Web And, just to be clear and to avoid future controversies, Zorro (whoever that is) and Aaron are NOT allowed in Cantamar. Wendy Fry, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Trouble in paradise: Americans say they’ve lost access to their Baja resort homes," 10 Apr. 2021 In fact, a good spring cleaning can avoid the need to upgrade to a newer, more expensive PC. Dave Johnson, Forbes, "9 Ways You Can Spring Clean Your Computer To Make It Run Faster And Live Longer," 9 Apr. 2021 Communities adopting the code will avoid locking in fossil fuels while retaining the option to rescind the code later. BostonGlobe.com, "Should cities and towns adopt the future net zero stretch energy code?," 9 Apr. 2021 With the health and safety of local communities in mind, for now, avoid traveling to countries with high infection rates, low vaccination rates, and overwhelmed medical infrastructure—all factors that can fluctuate rapidly. Sarah Kuta, Condé Nast Traveler, "These Countries Are Open to Fully Vaccinated Travelers," 9 Apr. 2021 That could avoid the pitfalls of the European Union’s vaccine rollout, which was heavily managed by Brussels and has been far slower than that in the United States or Britain. Mark Landler, New York Times, "Vaccine Passports Could Unlock World Travel and Cries of Discrimination," 9 Apr. 2021 More importantly, avoid decanting the entire bottle. Anthony Marcusa, chicagotribune.com, "How to store opened red wine," 9 Apr. 2021 Commissioners and Carroll County Budget Director Ted Zaleski focused on concerns about decreasing revenue and increasing expenses in the upcoming years, and how the county could avoid looming budgetary problems over the next five fiscal years. Ana Faguy, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Commissioners meet to balance budget; cuts seen as likely path forward," 9 Apr. 2021 Health officials continue to encourage Alaskans to wear face coverings in public, avoid large gatherings, wash their hands frequently, and get vaccinated against COVID-19 to prevent further spread. Anchorage Daily News, "Tracking COVID-19 in Alaska: 249 cases and no deaths reported Friday," 9 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'avoid.' 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 avoid

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for avoid

Middle English, from Anglo-French avoider, alteration of Old French esvuider, from es- (from Latin ex-) + vuider to empty — more at void entry 3

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Time Traveler for avoid

Time Traveler

The first known use of avoid was in the 14th century

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Statistics for avoid

Last Updated

12 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Avoid.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/avoid. Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for avoid

avoid

verb

English Language Learners Definition of avoid

: to stay away from (someone or something)
: to prevent the occurrence of (something bad, unpleasant, etc.)
: to keep yourself from doing (something) or participating in (something)

avoid

verb
\ ə-ˈvȯid How to pronounce avoid (audio) \
avoided; avoiding

Kids Definition of avoid

1 : to keep away from Are you avoiding me?
2 : to keep from happening avoid mistakes
3 : to keep from doing or being Brian turned back to avoid embarrassing the pilot …— Gary Paulsen, Hatchet

Legal Definition of avoid

1 : to make void or undo : annul the trustee may avoid any transfer of interest of the debtor in propertyU.S. Code
2 : to respond to (an allegation or averment) by declaring that facts alleged do not result in liability averments in a pleading to which no responsive pleading is required or permitted shall be taken as denied or avoidedU.S. Code — see also confession and avoidance — compare deny
3 : to prevent the occurrence of or responsibility for especially through lawful means avoid a tax — compare evade

Other Words from avoid

avoidability noun
avoidable adjective
avoidance noun

History and Etymology for avoid

modification of Old French esvuider to destroy, literally, to empty, from es- out + vuider to empty

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More from Merriam-Webster on avoid

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for avoid

Nglish: Translation of avoid for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of avoid for Arabic Speakers

Comments on avoid

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