op·​pose | \ ə-ˈpōz How to pronounce oppose (audio) \
opposed; opposing

Definition of oppose

transitive verb

1 : to place over against something so as to provide resistance, counterbalance, or contrast one military force opposed to another concreteness as opposed to abstraction— L. E. Lynch
2 : to place opposite or against something oppose the enemy oppose a congressional bill
3 : to offer resistance to

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Other Words from oppose

opposer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for oppose

oppose, combat, resist, withstand mean to set oneself against someone or something. oppose can apply to any conflict, from mere objection to bitter hostility or warfare. opposed the plan combat stresses the forceful or urgent countering of something. combat disease resist implies an overt recognition of a hostile or threatening force and a positive effort to counteract or repel it. resisting temptation withstand suggests a more passive resistance. trying to withstand peer pressure

Examples of oppose in a Sentence

The governor opposes the death penalty. The change is opposed by many of the town's business leaders. The group opposes the mayor and is trying to find a candidate to run against her. You've opposed every suggestion I've made. He met the man who will oppose him in the next election. These two teams opposed each other in last year's playoffs. We're hoping we can get more senators to oppose the legislation.
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Recent Examples on the Web Company management opposed the creation of a union. Bryce Covert, Wired, "How Kickstarter Employees Formed a Union," 27 May 2020 Having spent millions of dollars on medallions, these operators oppose any change that could hinder the return on their investment—such as introducing modern competition. Eamon Barrett, Fortune, "Uber’s new headquarters proposal for Hong Kong comes with a big caveat," 27 May 2020 The Trump administration has also opposed Sassounian’s release. Bob Egelko, SFChronicle.com, "Newsom vetoes parole of man who murdered Turkish diplomat as a teenager in 1982," 26 May 2020 The committee opposed segregation in the military and compulsory military service. Katharine Q. Seelye, BostonGlobe.com, "June Willenz, champion of women in the military, 95," 24 May 2020 While there have been growing calls to expand vote-by-mail, President Trump and his conservative allies are vehemently opposed. Melissa Quinn, CBS News, "Former DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff says November election should "definitely" include mail-in ballots," 24 May 2020 Chaotic virtual meeting in COVID-19 era Residents for months have opposed a potential Love's Travel Stop coming to far west Glendale. Joshua Bowling, azcentral, "'This is not a done deal': Love's says potential Glendale truck stop could be months out," 23 May 2020 The Sierra Club has also opposed the administration’s evisceration of air and water standards, its decision to open public lands to mining and drilling and the construction of a border wall. Elaine Ayala, ExpressNews.com, "Ayala: Sierra Club has all the right timing in electing its first Latino president," 23 May 2020 And in Polk County, 84% of voters opposed a $3.4 million ask from the Perrydale district, which would have paid for the construction of new classrooms, an overhaul of the ventilation systems in several buildings and accessibility upgrades. oregonlive, "Centennial school bond passes as other districts see mixed results: 2020 elections," 22 May 2020

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

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for oppose

Middle English opposen "to question, examine, accuse" (as past participle opposed "opposite, contrary"), borrowed from Anglo-French opposer "to counter, argue in opposition, question, interrogate," re-formation, with poser "to place, pose entry 1," of Latin oppōnere (perfect opposuī, past participle oppositus) "to place (over or against), place as an obstacle, set in opposition to, argue in reply," from ob- ob- + pōnere "to place, set" — more at position entry 1

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Time Traveler for oppose

Time Traveler

The first known use of oppose was in 1579

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Statistics for oppose

Last Updated

30 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Oppose.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/oppose. Accessed 1 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for oppose


How to pronounce oppose (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of oppose

: to disagree with or disapprove of (something or someone)
: to compete against (someone) : to be an opponent of (someone)
: to try to stop or defeat (something)


op·​pose | \ ə-ˈpōz How to pronounce oppose (audio) \
opposed; opposing

Kids Definition of oppose

1 : to disagree with or disapprove of They oppose the proposed changes.
2 : to compete against She will oppose the mayor in November's election.
3 : to provide contrast to Good opposes evil.
4 : to offer resistance to : try to stop or defeat The group will oppose the new law.
op·​pose | \ ə-ˈpōz How to pronounce oppose (audio) \
opposed; opposing

Medical Definition of oppose

: to place the ball of (a first digit) against the corresponding part of a second digit of the same hand or foot some monkeys oppose the big toe

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More from Merriam-Webster on oppose

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for oppose

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with oppose

Spanish Central: Translation of oppose

Nglish: Translation of oppose for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of oppose for Arabic Speakers

Comments on oppose

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