avoid

play
verb \ə-ˈvȯid\

Definition of avoid

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1a :  to keep away from :  shun They have been avoiding me.b :  to prevent the occurrence or effectiveness of avoid further delaysc :  to refrain from avoid overeating

  3. 2 law :  to make legally void (see 1void 1a) :  annul avoid a plea

  4. 3 archaic :  to depart or withdraw from :  leave

  5. 4 obsolete :  void, expel

avoidable

play \-ˈvȯi-də-bəl\ adjective

avoidably

play \-blē\ adverb

avoider

noun

Examples of avoid in a Sentence

  1. Why do you keep avoiding me?

  2. She took a detour to avoid the heavy traffic.

  3. They successfully avoided each other for days.

  4. He tried hard to avoid accidents.

  5. We need to avoid further delays.

  6. He was caught trying to avoid arrest.

  7. in an effort to avoid confusion

  8. I'm not going to be late if I can avoid it.

  9. How can I avoid paying too much tax?

  10. I am trying to avoid showing any hint of favoritism.

Recent Examples of avoid from the Web

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.

Origin and Etymology of avoid

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

Synonym Discussion of 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


AVOID Defined for English Language Learners

avoid

play
verb

Definition of avoid for English Language Learners

  • : 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 Defined for Kids

avoid

play
verb \ə-ˈvȯid\

Definition of avoid for Students

avoided

;

avoiding

  1. 1 :  to keep away from Are you avoiding me?

  2. 2 :  to keep from happening avoid mistakes

  3. 3 :  to keep from doing or being Brian turned back to avoid embarrassing the pilot … — Gary Paulsen, Hatchet


Law Dictionary

avoid

transitive verb

Legal Definition of avoid

  1. 1 :  to make void or undo :  annul the trustee may avoid any transfer of interest of the debtor in property — U.S. Code

  2. 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. 3 :  to prevent the occurrence of or responsibility for especially through lawful means avoid a tax — compare evade

avoidability

noun

avoidable

adjective

avoidance

noun

Origin and Etymology of avoid

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



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