juxtapose

verb
jux·​ta·​pose | \ ˈjək-stə-ˌpōz How to pronounce juxtapose (audio) \
juxtaposed; juxtaposing

Definition of juxtapose

transitive verb

: to place (different things) side by side (as to compare them or contrast them or to create an interesting effect) juxtapose unexpected combinations of colors, shapes and ideas— J. F. T. Bugental

Keep scrolling for more

Is juxtapose a Back-formation?

A back-formation is a word that has come about through the removal of a prefix or a suffix from a longer word. Etymologists think juxtapose is a back-formation that was created when people trimmed down the noun juxtaposition. Historical evidence supports the idea: juxtaposition was showing up in English documents as early as 1654, but juxtapose didn't appear until 1851. Juxtaposition is itself thought to be a combination of Latin juxta, meaning "near," and English position.

Examples of juxtapose in a Sentence

a display that juxtaposes modern art with classical art

Recent Examples on the Web

Just as 2001 juxtaposes a distant past and future, the pieces Kubrick chose veered from knowingly traditional to harshly modernistic -- and their use led to resurgences in popularity of many of them. Billboard, "'2001: A Space Odyssey' 50th Anniversary: 5 Highlights from Original Soundtrack," 3 Apr. 2018 Finding the balance—getting things juxtaposed just right—that’s kind of the whole package right there. Corey Seymour, Vogue, "Brexit, Bowie, Grenfell, and Burnout: 22 Minutes with the Lead Singer of Fat White Family," 27 Apr. 2019 At its most basic level, mid-century modern designs are known for juxtaposing sleek lines (think: skinny, peg legs on dressers and tables) with organic shapes, using new materials and methods to reimagine traditional pieces. Hillary Brown, House Beautiful, "Everything You Need To Know About Mid-Century Modern Design," 13 Sep. 2018 Now downstairs, the new, more inconspicuous space features red walls juxtaposed by cream couches and geometric coffee tables. Arielle Paul, latimes.com, "My Favorite Room: David Gebbia loosens up in his 'burlesque room'," 7 July 2018 Throughout, Merrill juxtaposed contemporary pieces with older things the family owned, as in the dining room whose Ken Peterson custom dining table is offset by a grandfather clock. Vanessa Lawrence, ELLE Decor, "Reath Design Crafts a Bright, Elegant Home for a Young Family," 22 Mar. 2019 In a new ad from the National Republican Congressional Committee, lyrics from Delgado’s rap career are juxtaposed against clips from his recent campaign ads. P.r. Lockhart, Vox, "A black candidate made a rap album. His white opponent says it makes him unfit for Congress.," 12 Sep. 2018 The result is a combustible blend, both sweet and smoky, that juxtaposes the spirit of the Americas with a label that’s 100 percent made in Italy. Erik Maza, Town & Country, "Can Liqueurs Be the Next Big Thing in Food-Cocktail Pairings?," 14 Jan. 2019 The British composer ingeniously juxtaposed nine poems of Wilfred Owen, a disillusioned enlisted officer killed in the final days of World War I, with the traditional Latin Mass for the Dead. Barbara Jepson, WSJ, "Benjamin Britten’s ‘War Requiem’ Review: Mixing Sacred and Secular," 30 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'juxtapose.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of juxtapose

1851, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for juxtapose

probably back-formation from juxtaposition

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about juxtapose

Listen to Our Podcast about juxtapose

Dictionary Entries near juxtapose

juvenilize

juvia

juxta-

juxtapose

juxtaposed

juxtaposit

juxtaposition

Statistics for juxtapose

Last Updated

12 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for juxtapose

The first known use of juxtapose was in 1851

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for juxtapose

juxtapose

verb

English Language Learners Definition of juxtapose

formal : to place (different things) together in order to create an interesting effect or to show how they are the same or different

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on juxtapose

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

WORD OF THE DAY

showing great care, attention, and effort

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!