avoid·​ance | \ ə-ˈvȯi-dᵊn(t)s How to pronounce avoidance (audio) \

Definition of avoidance

1 obsolete

a : an action of emptying, vacating, or clearing away
b : outlet
3 : an act or practice of avoiding or withdrawing from something

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Examples of avoidance in a Sentence

a writer known for avoidance of sentimentality a complete avoidance of sentimentality

Recent Examples on the Web

But local officials are concerned about congestion along the Causeway due to local toll avoidance. al.com, "Mobile mayor confident ALDOT will ‘reduce tolls’," 4 July 2019 Over time, increases in economic growth and decreases in tax avoidance can offset some of the revenue losses. Karl W. Smith, The Denver Post, "Guest Commentary: Not all budget deficits are created equal," 17 June 2019 For example, safety systems such as lane departure warnings and collision avoidance are becoming readily available in new ultra-luxury cars. Nathan Bomey, USA TODAY, "Rolls-Royce, Aston Martin, Lamborghini car prices plunge as ultra-luxury market expands," 10 June 2019 Tax avoidance in the form of people living downtown but claiming suburban residency to avoid city income taxes or high auto insurance rates is often cited as a problem. John Gallagher, Detroit Free Press, "How downtown Detroit's taxes work and who really pays them," 4 June 2019 The decline is due in large part to increasingly sophisticated techniques in what’s known as union avoidance. Livia Gershon, Longreads, "Nurses, Unite!," 28 June 2018 But airlines say fee avoidance is far from the whole story. Scott Mccartney, WSJ, "On U.S. Planes, the Dogs Are Winning," 8 Aug. 2018 Foul avoidance: Oklahoma ranks eighth nationally in defensive free-throw rate and also has been the best in Big 12 play at avoiding whistles. Jesse Newell, kansascity, "Quick scout: Why KU’s second-half weakness will be tested against Oklahoma," 22 Jan. 2018 There is no shortage of clever tax avoidance tricks that have been blessed by either the courts or the IRS itself. Susanne Craig, The Seattle Times, "Trump engaged in suspect tax schemes as he reaped riches from father," 2 Oct. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for avoidance

Last Updated

7 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for avoidance

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

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More Definitions for avoidance



English Language Learners Definition of avoidance

: the act of avoiding something


avoid·​ance | \ ə-ˈvȯi-dᵊns How to pronounce avoidance (audio) \

Kids Definition of avoidance

: the act of avoiding something avoidance of trouble


noun, often attributive
avoid·​ance | \ ə-ˈvȯid-ᵊn(t)s How to pronounce avoidance (audio) \

Medical Definition of avoidance

: the act or practice of keeping away from or withdrawing from something undesirable reinforced by escape or avoidance of electric shock— E. S. Katkin & E. N. Murray avoidance learning especially : an anticipatory response undertaken to avoid a noxious stimulus conditioned avoidance in mice

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Comments on avoidance

What made you want to look up avoidance? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to form ideas or theories about something

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