contradiction

noun
con·tra·dic·tion | \ ˌkän-trə-ˈdik-shən \

Definition of contradiction 

1 : act or an instance of contradicting the defendant's contradiction of the plaintiff's accusations

2a : a proposition, statement, or phrase that asserts or implies both the truth and falsity of something … both parts of a contradiction cannot possibly be true … —Thomas Hobbes

b : a statement or phrase whose parts contradict each other a round square is a contradiction in terms

3a : logical incongruity

b : a situation in which inherent factors, actions, or propositions are inconsistent or contrary to one another

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Examples of contradiction in a Sentence

No one was surprised by the defendant's contradiction of the plaintiff's accusations. Her rebuttal contained many contradictions to my arguments. There have been some contradictions in his statements. There is a contradiction between what he said yesterday and what he said today. Her statements are mired in contradiction. What he said yesterday is in direct contradiction to what he said today.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The story of Franklin shows the contradiction that the Cold War posed for the United States: a desire to assert American values abroad, along with the need to compromise those values in a complicated political reality. Amanda Laugesen, Smithsonian, "This Cold War-Era Publishing House Wanted To Share American Values With the World," 13 July 2018 That chronological stuttering can feel like a contradiction. Sarah Scoles, WIRED, "Never Prebook Your Return Flight From a Rocket Launch," 6 July 2018 With flashing eyes that tear up at the drop of a cat and a muscular frame made for monument-worthy poses, this Padraic is a strutting contradiction of attraction and repulsion, daring us to question our conventional notions of the heroic. Ben Brantley, New York Times, "Orlando Bloom and Aidan Turner Are Drenched in Blood in London," 4 July 2018 The study’s findings are a contradiction to a previous, much debated study which suggested humans live to a maximum age of 115. Laura Yan, Popular Mechanics, "How Long Can Humans Really Live?," 1 July 2018 Many teams are a direct contradiction of the anti-immigration sentiment sweeping parts of Europe. Ann Killion, SFChronicle.com, "Shut up and dribble? Not in basketball. Certainly not in soccer," 25 June 2018 And, yes, Chuck Schumer already got his inevitable digs in at the seeming contradiction of being married to the International Cyberbullying Society’s Man of the Century. Mark Lisanti, Vanities, "The Trump Family Power Rankings: Be Best, but Not Too Best," 11 May 2018 The contradiction between a man anxious to wreck shop in the Western world and the shrinking violet that was about to meet Putin was striking. Aaron Blake, Washington Post, "Trump’s huge self-contradiction on Russia at NATO," 12 July 2018 Baffling Authorities are struggling to make sense of the family's life, and the glaring contradiction between the cruel living conditions the siblings endured, and the image the Turpins projected of happy family life. Dipesh Navsaria, Houston Chronicle, "What parents should know to prevent — and deal with — bug bites," 6 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for contradiction

see contradict

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Phrases Related to contradiction

contradiction in terms

without fear of contradiction

Statistics for contradiction

Last Updated

19 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for contradiction

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

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More Definitions for contradiction

contradiction

noun

English Language Learners Definition of contradiction

: the act of saying something that is opposite or very different in meaning to something else

: a difference or disagreement between two things which means that both cannot be true

contradiction

noun
con·tra·dic·tion | \ ˌkän-trə-ˈdik-shən \

Kids Definition of contradiction

: something (as a statement) that is the opposite of or is much different from something else There were many contradictions in her story.

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