coun·​ter·​move ˈkau̇n-tər-ˌmüv How to pronounce countermove (audio)
variants or counter-move
plural countermoves or counter-moves
: a move designed to check, offset, or counter another move
Chess-playing programs, for instance, were … instructed to look ahead and try to calculate all possible moves and countermoves.Tom Alexander
… had seen … a linebacker drift out and line up nose to nose on a wide receiver. It surprised them, and they had come up with a countermove.Mark Bowden
… wanted to play out the long-term implications of possible U.S. moves and Iranian countermoves.James Fallows
"Their kidnapping of Miss Tuppence is the counter-move to your escape."Agatha Christie

Examples of countermove in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This interplay ensures that the balance of survival never stagnates, as each evolutionary innovation prompts a countermove in the complex chess game of predator-prey relationships. Scott Travers, Forbes, 13 Feb. 2024 Put simply, with Shopify expanding its reach, Amazon’s Buy with Prime Assist seems like a smart countermove. Chris Walton, Forbes, 29 Nov. 2023 Unbeknownst to Barracuda and researchers at the Mandiant security firm Barracuda brought in to remediate, the hackers commenced major countermoves in the days following Barracuda’s disclosure of the vulnerability on May 20. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, 30 Aug. 2023 Instead, Anatomy of a Fall delivers a series of thrusts, parries, and other countermoves that chronicles the ways in which even the best of relationships can start to rot from the inside out. David Fear, Rolling Stone, 12 Oct. 2023 China has bristled at the United States for escalating sanctions with new restrictions on U.S. investments in its high-tech sector, including its semiconductor and microelectronics industries, and considers many of its punitive actions against American firms to be proportional countermoves. Karoun Demirjian, New York Times, 6 Oct. 2023 Filed in Cook County this week, the lawsuit lays out a complex series of questionable moves and countermoves regarding the sale and purchase of two buildings on 17th Street in Maywood and alleges Yarbrough was not even legally allowed to make the sales. A.d. Quig, Chicago Tribune, 29 July 2023 But hitters had their countermove, which can loosely and somewhat inaccurately be described as the launch angle revolution. Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY, 7 July 2023 Each move and countermove shaves away the time available for leaders to decide how to respond to a possible nuclear strike. IEEE Spectrum, 17 June 2023

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

Word History

First Known Use

1858, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of countermove was in 1858

Dictionary Entries Near countermove

Cite this Entry

“Countermove.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Jun. 2024.

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