opponent

noun
op·​po·​nent | \ ə-ˈpō-nənt How to pronounce opponent (audio) \

Definition of opponent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one that takes an opposite position (as in a debate, contest, or conflict) She is a formidable opponent in the race for senator. opponents of the war
2 : a muscle that opposes or counteracts and limits the action of another

opponent

adjective

Definition of opponent (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : situated in front

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Synonyms for opponent

Synonyms: Noun

adversary, antagonist, foe, rival

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Examples of opponent in a Sentence

Noun

She is a formidable opponent in the race for senator. The team's opponents have not lost a game this season. He knocked out his opponent in the third round.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Though plenty of people on both sides of the aisle are in support of the bill, its major opponent is Senator Don Gustavson, a Republican, who leads the Coalition of Energy Users. Cady Drell, Marie Claire, "Environmental Measures on the 2018 Midterm Election Ballots You Should Know About," 18 Oct. 2018 But in the end, the official result: Republican opponent Brian Kemp had 1,978,408 votes (50.2 percent) and Abrams had 1,923,685 (48.8 percent)—a difference of 54,723 votes. Brittney Cooper, Marie Claire, "Stacey Abrams Is Just Getting Started," 11 Mar. 2019 Once an open opponent of the regulations, Wheeler's proposal could now fundamentally change them. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "EPA Wants To Hollow Out Regulations That Safeguard Against Mercury Poisoning," 28 Dec. 2018 Democrat Stacey Abrams has an opponent in her quest to become Georgia's next governor. Celeste Katz, Glamour, "Stacey Abrams Has to Beat Donald Trump's Guy to Become America's First Black Woman Governor," 25 July 2018 Lehi Crossing residents Tiffany Hartman and Renee Garcia, two of Vulcan's most vocal opponents, have lodged many complaints with the county's Air Quality Department. Lily Altavena, azcentral, "Controversy in the air as Mesa homeowners decry neighboring asphalt plant’s odors," 11 July 2018 Griffin had some struggles and seemed to be increasingly targeted by opponents as the season wore on. Bob Condotta, The Seattle Times, "2019 figures to mark the true transition for Seattle secondary from the Legion of Boom," 19 Feb. 2019 This monitor thrives when players have fast reactions and can see every frame of what their opponents are up to. Stefan Etienne, The Verge, "MSI Oculux NXG251 monitor review: faster isn’t always better," 29 Nov. 2018 That means opponents are free to concentrate on the balance of the Heat lineup and pack the paint. Ira Winderman, Sun-Sentinel.com, "ASK IRA: Do Heat have to be mindful of protecting future cap space?," 10 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The Colts rank fourth in the NFL in opponent kickoff-return average, a product of Sanchez’s savvy as a kickoff specialist. Stephen Holder, Indianapolis Star, "Colts' thumbs up, down: Jack Doyle, Jabaal Sheard starred this season," 1 Jan. 2018 The Lady Rams sank 85.7% (6-7) of their free throws and lost a Badgers-opponent season-high 26 turnovers to a season-high 14 steals by SHC. Spring Hill College Athletics, AL.com, "Spring Hill women continue to roll with 73-46 win over Mobile," 24 Jan. 2018 Milwaukee has cut opponent three-point attempts from 27.4 per game in the first 18 contests to 23.3 in the past seven. Matt Velazquez, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Bucks are on a roll since getting back to basics in Berkeley," 10 Dec. 2017 His style is more along the lines of Floyd Mayweather Jr. — avoid contact, make the opponent look bad and win on points — which, to fans who thrive on continuous action and massive fistic exchanges, does not sit well. Bob Velin, USA TODAY, "Lomachenko vs. Rigondeaux: Historic fight with great expectations," 8 Dec. 2017 Another highlight on the slate is a trip to Tuscon, Ariz., to play Pac-12 opponent Arizona on Dec. 3. Tod Leonard, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Bahamas trip included in schedule for SDSU women's basketball," 9 Aug. 2017 Milpitas was scheduled to host Mission San Jose at SummitPointe Golf Course on Wednesday and to play league opponent Wilcox at Santa Clara Golf and Tennis Club on Thursday. Julian Ramos, The Mercury News, "Milpitas: Trojans baseball tops Branham High," 23 Mar. 2017

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

Noun

1553, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1647, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for opponent

Noun

borrowed from Medieval Latin oppōnent-, oppōnens "one who proposes something for discussion," from present participle of Latin oppōnere "to place as an obstacle, set in opposition to, argue in reply" — more at oppose

Adjective

borrowed from Latin oppōnent-, oppōnens, present participle of oppōnere "to place as an obstacle, set in opposition to, argue in reply" — more at oppose

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Learn More about opponent

Dictionary Entries near opponent

oppo

oppone

opponency

opponent

opportune

opportunism

opportunist

Statistics for opponent

Last Updated

10 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for opponent

The first known use of opponent was in 1553

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More Definitions for opponent

opponent

noun

English Language Learners Definition of opponent

: a person, team, group, etc., that is competing against another in a contest
: a person, group, etc., that is against something (such as an action, law, or system) : someone or something that does not want something to exist, be done, etc.

opponent

noun
op·​po·​nent | \ ə-ˈpō-nənt How to pronounce opponent (audio) \

Kids Definition of opponent

: a person or thing that takes an opposite position in a contest, fight, or controversy

opponent

noun
op·​po·​nent | \ ə-ˈpō-nənt How to pronounce opponent (audio) \

Medical Definition of opponent

: a muscle that opposes or counteracts and limits the action of another

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More from Merriam-Webster on opponent

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with opponent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for opponent

Spanish Central: Translation of opponent

Nglish: Translation of opponent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of opponent for Arabic Speakers

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not to be persuaded, moved, or stopped

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