con·​tra·​ven·​tion ˌkän-trə-ˈven(t)-shən How to pronounce contravention (audio)
: the act of contravening : violation

Examples of contravention in a Sentence

a clandestine weapons program that was a contravention of the international arms agreement
Recent Examples on the Web A day later, Ohio’s legislature essentially created an organization that’s immune from government oversight—in direct contravention of a state Supreme Court ruling two months ago. Jack Shuler, The New Republic, 10 July 2023 That assignment, especially, was closely questioned by lawmakers and was considered by a number of Secret Service officials, former and current, as a contravention of their apolitical mission. Taylor Wilson, USA TODAY, 12 Apr. 2023 Therefore, any violence in the history of Christianity is in contravention to the basic spirit of the religion. Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 25 Apr. 2013 The Palestinian Authority said that Israeli attacks in Gaza damaged a children’s hospital, in contravention of the Geneva Convention. Leila Sackur, NBC News, 8 Apr. 2023 The recommendation and resolution came after Butler, pursuant to legal advice, called for some flags to be removed from classrooms following a parent raising concerns over whether the Pride flags could be deemed political in nature, in contravention of district policy. Ted Glanzer, Hartford Courant, 26 Oct. 2022 Speaking to socially distanced reporters and decidedly not enjoying the lovely weather, Cummings justified his decision to drive with his family from London to a house in County Durham early in the pandemic, in apparent contravention of quarantine restrictions. Rebecca Mead, The New Yorker, 11 Jan. 2022 Netanyahu’s new government is advocating numerous policies that go in contravention to U.S. goals, including a plan to expand Jewish settlements in the West Bank, which is claimed by Palestinians for a future independent state. Tracy Wilkinsonstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 28 Jan. 2023 Further, the change to the control rule was in contravention to assurances SEC Executive Director Ginne-Ray Clay made to applicants in March 2022, the complaint claims. Ted Glanzer, Hartford Courant, 1 Aug. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'contravention.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle French, from Late Latin contravenire — more at contravene

First Known Use

1579, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of contravention was in 1579

Dictionary Entries Near contravention

Cite this Entry

“Contravention.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

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