enemy

noun
en·​e·​my | \ˈe-nə-mē \
plural enemies

Definition of enemy 

1 : one that is antagonistic to another especially : one seeking to injure, overthrow, or confound an opponent

2 : something harmful or deadly alcohol was his greatest enemy

3a : a military adversary

b : a hostile unit or force

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Synonyms & Antonyms for enemy

Synonyms

adversary, antagonist, foe, hostile, opponent

Antonyms

amigo, friend

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Examples of enemy in a Sentence

He made a lot of enemies during the course of his career. Tradition is the enemy of progress.

Recent Examples on the Web

The enemies were diffuse — nature and the ticking clock. Washington Post, "A Thai cave, an extraordinary tale and a captivated world," 12 July 2018 The result, when the enemy AI refuses to allow itself to be pushed off the side, is that fights can drag on. Julie Muncy, WIRED, "Extreme Meatpunks Forever," 11 July 2018 In the cancer ward, the instinct has long been to eliminate the enemy; success has typically been measured as the destruction of a cancer. James Degregori, STAT, "Using the principles of evolution to treat and prevent cancer," 27 June 2018 Perhaps no feeling was more horrifying to a soldier in the Civil War than the realization deep into a charge against the enemy that the assault was doomed. Ryan P. Smith, Smithsonian, "Newly Unearthed Civil War Bones Speak Silently to the Grim Aftermath of Battle," 20 June 2018 But America has made a mockery of the WTO by picking trade fights with friends and enemies alike, and by refusing to appoint judges to its appeals body—opening the way for China to set up a rival body of its own. The Economist, "Xi’s world order: July 2024," 7 July 2018 Gambit is a unique mash-up of PvP and PvE, tasking two teams of four with killing enemies to collect enough motes of light to summon an end-boss before the others—or spending those motes to harass the rival group. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "The best PC games of E3 2018," 15 June 2018 And there’s a powerful air dash that can be aimed in pretty much any direction, as Ridley slams into enemies, leaving a purple energy trail in his wake. Scott Meslow, GQ, "Super Smash Bros. Ultimate," 15 June 2018 His cross-eyes and panting-dog demeanor belie a natural genius, which is the player's talent at jumping on enemies and spinning into them like a dervish to vanquish them. Harold Goldberg, chicagotribune.com, "Classic games, lovingly reimagined in 'Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy'," 13 July 2018

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for enemy

Middle English enemi, from Anglo-French, from Latin inimicus, from in- in- entry 1 + amicus friend — more at amiable

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Statistics for enemy

Last Updated

27 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for enemy

The first known use of enemy was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for enemy

enemy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of enemy

: someone who hates another : someone who attacks or tries to harm another

: something that harms or threatens someone or something

: a group of people (such as a nation) against whom another group is fighting a war

enemy

noun
en·​e·​my | \ˈe-nə-mē \
plural enemies

Kids Definition of enemy

1 : a person who hates another : a person who attacks or tries to harm another

2 : a country or group of people with which another country or group is at war or a person belonging to such a country or group

3 : something that harms or threatens Drought is the farmer's enemy.

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More from Merriam-Webster on enemy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for enemy

Spanish Central: Translation of enemy

Nglish: Translation of enemy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of enemy for Arabic Speakers

Comments on enemy

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