op·​por·​tu·​ni·​ty | \ ˌä-pər-ˈtü-nə-tē How to pronounce opportunity (audio) , -ˈtyü- \
plural opportunities

Definition of opportunity

1 : a favorable juncture of circumstances the halt provided an opportunity for rest and refreshment
2 : a good chance for advancement or progress

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Synonyms for opportunity


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Examples of opportunity in a Sentence

A phony war because its stated objective—eradicating terrorism—is impossible and serves to mask unstated, alarmingly open-ended goals, a kind of fishing expedition that provides an opportunity for America to display its intimidating arsenal … — John Edgar Wideman, Harper's, March 2002 Nowadays my only opportunity for an old-fashioned, self-indulgent sulk comes when I'm traveling. — Ian Frazier, Atlantic, March 2001 I'm handing you an opportunity in the heart of the city where the whole world's heading: journalists, corporate leeches, Japanese tourists, Greco-Roman wrestlers. — Gary Smith, Illustrated, 11 Sept. 2000 More than 90 percent of female senior managers believe that men's and women's opportunities remain unequal … — Katha Pollitt, Atlantic, November 1997 You'll have an opportunity to ask questions after the presentation. When the opportunity came for her to prove that she could do the job, she was ready. I had the rare opportunity of speaking to the president. Studying abroad provides a great opportunity to learn a foreign language. There are fewer job opportunities this year for graduates. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who helped me with this book. He was given every opportunity to prove that he was trustworthy. There is plenty of opportunity for advancement within the company.
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Recent Examples on the Web President Barack Obama’s initial presidential campaign was presented with the opportunity to sponsor a car in a NASCAR race, but eventually declined that chance. Fox News, "Trump to rev up Daytona 500 with historic lap in presidential limo, ‘The Beast’," 16 Feb. 2020 The Enquirer's Tyler Dragon wrote last month about how Bieniemy is one of the many minority assistant coaches who deserve an opportunity to be a head coach. Dave Clark, Cincinnati.com, "Report: Colorado asks Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy about Buffaloes' vacancy," 14 Feb. 2020 If your wardrobe is also in a slump, President's Day offers an affordable opportunity to refresh — whether that means adding some cold-weather wear or getting a jump on spring. Julie Tong, Vogue, "Here’s What Vogue Editors Are Buying on Sale This President’s Day," 14 Feb. 2020 After another solid start on his opening hole, Tiger Woods went from contention to cut line, wasting opportunities along the way on Friday morning. Adam Woodard, Golfweek, "Tiger Woods goes from contention to cut line after rough Friday at Genesis Invitational," 14 Feb. 2020 Doing anything with up to a 40-minute lag is an exercise in patience and a recipe for missed opportunities. G. Ryan Faith, Wired, "NASA’s Epic Gamble to Get Martian Dirt Back to Earth," 14 Feb. 2020 That almost certainly has been interrupted due to the coronavirus outbreak, but the epidemic also could offer some opportunities. Jacky Wong, WSJ, "Dark Clouds and a Silver Lining for Alibaba," 13 Feb. 2020 The arena will allow professional and amateur esports athletes alike or individuals who just want to play video games with friends the opportunity to play on the same cutting-edge gaming equipment used by professional gamers. Los Angeles Times, "Los Angeles will be home to largest public esports arena on West Coast this summer," 12 Feb. 2020 The Bucks have been stomping teams this whole season and there are very few opportunities to bet against them. Geoff Clark, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Milwaukee Bucks at Indiana Pacers odds, picks and best bets," 12 Feb. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for opportunity

Middle English oportunyte, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French oportunité, borrowed from Latin opportūnitāt-, opportūnitās, from opportūnus "convenient, opportune" + -itāt-, -itās -ity

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Time Traveler for opportunity

Time Traveler

The first known use of opportunity was in the 14th century

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Statistics for opportunity

Last Updated

19 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Opportunity.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/opportunity. Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for opportunity


How to pronounce opportunity (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of opportunity

: an amount of time or a situation in which something can be done


op·​por·​tu·​ni·​ty | \ ˌä-pər-ˈtü-nə-tē How to pronounce opportunity (audio) , -ˈtyü- \
plural opportunities

Kids Definition of opportunity

1 : a favorable combination of circumstances, time, and place He practices guitar at every opportunity.
2 : a chance for greater success “… learning secretarial skills is an exciting opportunity for me …”— Lemony Snicket, The Austere Academy

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