avoid

verb
\ ə-ˈvȯid \
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 \ -​ˈvȯi-​də-​bəl \ adjective
avoidably \ -​blē \ 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

Atlanta drivers, for example, will want to avoid being on the road on December 22 from 3-4 p.m., as congestion will be four times higher than normal—and normal is already pretty bad. Katherine Lagrave, Condé Nast Traveler, "This Is the Worst Day to Travel Before Christmas," 13 Dec. 2018 The series avoids berating audiences with textbook animal facts and tidbits — think of it more like Planet Earth meets Game of Thrones with a hint of Shakespeare. Gabe Bergado, Teen Vogue, "BBC Earth's "Dynasties" Pulls at Heartstrings With the Painted Wolves’ Fight for Survival," 12 Dec. 2018 While Ellis and her designer avoided major roadblocks during there weren’t any major challenges throughout the renovation, wall removal did cause some slight molding damage that needed to be fixed by a craftsperson. Samantha Weiss Hills, Curbed, "“Every morning, I wake up and notice something new about it”," 3 Dec. 2018 To try and avoid this situation Lyft is making any ride that goes unrated default to a five-star rating. James Vincent, The Verge, "Lyft adds driver-friendly features including default tipping option," 15 Nov. 2018 Microsoft also added the ability to add a small border to the screenshot, to avoid pasting a white image into a screenful of black and white text; and the ability to quickly print right from within the app itself. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Hints of Windows 10's 2019 future show up in early '19H1' builds," 6 Nov. 2018 That being said, with the right set of guidelines, there are easy ways to avoid making the same painting mistakes in the future. Lucia Tonelli, ELLE Decor, "The Most Common Paint Problems And How To Avoid Them," 6 Sep. 2018 Costly mistakes, for both the company and workers, can be avoided. Patrick Sisson, Vox, "In Walmart’s virtual reality simulation, Black Friday never ends," 15 Nov. 2018 With its latest update, Netflix avoids all of this and looks rightly optimized for the new iPad Pros. Chris Welch, The Verge, "Netflix updated its app to resolve an early annoyance with Apple’s new iPad Pro," 12 Nov. 2018

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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Statistics for avoid

Last Updated

5 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for avoid

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

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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 \
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

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with avoid

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for avoid

Spanish Central: Translation of avoid

Nglish: Translation of avoid for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of avoid for Arabic Speakers

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