resist

verb
re·​sist | \ ri-ˈzist \
resisted; resisting; resists

Definition of resist

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to exert force in opposition

transitive verb

1 : to exert oneself so as to counteract or defeat he resisted temptation
2 : to withstand the force or effect of material that resists heat

resist

noun, often attributive

Definition of resist (Entry 2 of 2)

: something (such as a coating) that protects against a chemical, electrical, or physical action

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Choose the Right Synonym for resist

Verb

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 resist in a Sentence

Verb

He was charged with resisting arrest. These windows can resist very high winds. The drug will help your body resist infection. She couldn't resist telling us what she'd heard. He was able to resist the urge to tell her his secret. It was hard resisting the temptation to open the box. The offer was hard to resist. I know I shouldn't have any more cake, but I can't resist.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In addition, some of the border areas, including the Syrian town of Kobane, have predominately Kurdish populations, who would presumably resist being asked to withdraw. John Hudson, The Seattle Times, "Trump’s vow to ‘devastate’ Turkey’s economy rattles negotiations over Syria," 14 Jan. 2019 Even though bricks resist rain well vertically, when laid horizontally, moisture can build up and seep beneath the surface. Danielle Tullo, House Beautiful, "7 Things You Should Know Before Installing Brick Floors," 7 Sep. 2018 Just definitely resist the urge to squeeze or pop the bump—that can lead to infection or scarring, Dr. Hsiao says. Korin Miller, SELF, "How to Tell If That Bump on Your Bikini Line Is an Ingrown Hair," 7 Jan. 2019 Wright's prose-poetry style has always resisted categorization, and simply blown apart convention; An Amble will surely serve as a conservation not just of nature but of Wright's indelible voice, which is sorely missed. Bridget Read, Vogue, "Most Anticipated Books of 2019: 19 Picks You Should Have on Your Reading List," 1 Jan. 2019 Later, while telling patrons about the local lore, the bartender at the Buck can’t resist a few jokes at the expense of Sundance and Park City, Utah. Alex Bhattacharji, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why Telluride Keeps Being Named the Best U.S. Ski Town," 5 Dec. 2018 The only question is whether Microsoft will resist wielding the very same weapon that felled it so many years ago. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "Google Chrome Is Poised to Swallow the Whole Internet," 4 Dec. 2018 Kate Middleton is a fan of a professional shift dress or a classic skirt suit, but the royal fashion icon also can't resist jumping onto a style trend. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Middleton Wore the Same Polka Dot Dress as a Royal Wedding Guest," 13 Nov. 2018 House Democrats are unlikely to resist the temptations of impeachment and prioritize substance over style. Bobby Jindal, WSJ, "If Democrats Were Shrewd . . .," 30 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

David Erickson, 43, of Garden City, was booked into the Ada County Jail on two felony charges of battery against law enforcement, one misdemeanor count of resist and obstruction and a misdemeanor count of trespassing, according to a release. Michael Katz, idahostatesman, "Two local police officers injured after suspect becomes violent on Greenbelt | Idaho Statesman," 30 Mar. 2018 But the resist-Trump movement -- combined with more Hispanics moving into the region and the retirement of Royce and fellow GOP Rep. Darrell Issa in the nearby 49th district -- resulted in Democratic hopefuls piling into races. Joseph Weber, Fox News, "In wild California primary, Democratic candidate sues over rivals' ballot entries, candidates eased out," 28 Mar. 2018 Head to her three-hour workshop for a history lesson and a hands-on tutorial in shibori (an ancient Japanese method of resist dyeing not unlike tie-dye). Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "West Elm Has Curated Workshops With its Favorite Local Artisans Across the U.S.," 13 Mar. 2018 With the support of UNHCR, RefuSHE also encourages economic empowerment by teaching the young women to make colorful scarves using resist-dyeing, a traditional East African technique similar to tie-dye. Alison S. Cohn, Harper's BAZAAR, "Runway of Hope: Angelina Jolie Opens Up About a Different Kind of Fashion Show," 8 Mar. 2018 The indigo resist-dye style fabric seen on said dress is easily reminiscent of the oceanic textiles in Areté Complete's own designs. Madeleine Luckel, Vogue, "From French Floral Prints to Blue Shibori, Bring New York Fashion Week Looks Into Your Home," 12 Feb. 2018 But many of the #resist leaders aren’t ready for a victory lap just yet. Philip Elliott / Los Angeles, Time, "Here's What It Was Like to Watch the State of the Union With the Resistance," 31 Jan. 2018 Despite scarce resources and a broken-down infrastructure, learning the craft of resist-dyeing (or tie-dyeing) has helped them work toward economic independence through making their own scarves. Emily Farra, Vogue, "Nest Gathers Industry Leaders at the United Nations to Discuss the New Handworker Economy and the Future of Ethical Fashion," 11 Dec. 2017 But most resist, because random strings are hard to remember. Jo Craven Mcginty, WSJ, "If ‘P@$$w0rd1’ Is So Simple to Figure Out, Then What Should You Do?," 18 Aug. 2017

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

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1836, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for resist

Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French resister, from Latin resistere, from re- + sistere to take a stand; akin to Latin stare to stand — more at stand

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Learn More about resist

Statistics for resist

Last Updated

2 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for resist

The first known use of resist was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for resist

resist

verb

English Language Learners Definition of resist

: to fight against (something) : to try to stop or prevent (something)
: to remain strong against the force or effect of (something) : to not be affected or harmed by (something)
: to prevent yourself from doing something that you want to do

resist

verb
re·​sist | \ ri-ˈzist \
resisted; resisting

Kids Definition of resist

1 : to fight against : oppose Students resisted the war.
2 : to avoid doing or having something I can't resist bragging. Who can resist chocolate?
3 : to withstand the force or effect of These plants resist disease.

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More from Merriam-Webster on resist

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with resist

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for resist

Spanish Central: Translation of resist

Nglish: Translation of resist for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of resist for Arabic Speakers

Comments on resist

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