reversal

noun
re·​ver·​sal | \ ri-ˈvər-səl How to pronounce reversal (audio) \

Definition of reversal

1 : an act or the process of reversing
2 : a conversion of a photographic positive into a negative or vice versa
3 : a change (as of fortune) often for the worse

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for reversal

Synonyms

knock, lapse, reverse, setback

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of reversal in a Sentence

In a sudden reversal, the mayor has decided not to run for reelection. the reversal of a decision a surprising reversal in the value of the stock We had a role reversal. I became the leader and he became the follower. In a reversal of roles, he is now taking care of his mother. Reversal of the decision is unlikely.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

His announcement in an Israeli television interview Saturday night amounted to a reversal of decades of Israel’s policy acknowledging that... Dov Lieber, WSJ, "Netanyahu Deals Palestinians Another Blow With West Bank Sovereignty Pledge," 8 Apr. 2019 In a shocking reversal, Maryland's highest court announced this month that Syed will not receive a new trial, reinstating his murder conviction and reversing the Court of Special Appeals' decision from last year. Emma Dibdin, Harper's BAZAAR, "A Complete Timeline of The Case Against Adnan Syed," 31 Mar. 2019 Some have been tempted to link the disputatiousness to recent reversals in Bill’s investment performance. Michael Hiltzik, latimes.com, "Vandalized homes, spying, a knife and restraining orders: Inside a billionaire couple's nightmarish divorce," 20 June 2018 In a shocking reversal, the Senate voted 52-47 to disapprove of the rollback of network neutrality—the policy that treats broadband and wireless data as common carriers. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "The Senate Votes Against the Net-Neutrality Rollback," 16 May 2018 The New York Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court, is now considering whether to hear the district attorney’s challenge to the lower court’s reversal of Mr. Giuca’s conviction. Alan Feuer, New York Times, "Prosecutors Prepare to Retry the 2003 Killing of a College Student," 1 May 2018 The settlement was authorized thanks to a reversal by County Judge Kyle Kutscher at a March 15 special meeting, where the matter was discussed in executive session for 90 minutes. Zeke Maccormack, San Antonio Express-News, "San Marcos Float Fest is a go," 3 Apr. 2018 Get our daily newsletter This has led to the starkest reversal in modern geopolitics. The Economist, "Decades of optimism about China’s rise have been discarded," 1 Mar. 2018 The missile pulled lead, then did a ninety degree reversal and hit the aircraft in the tail. Alex Hollings, Popular Mechanics, "Why the F-14 Tomcat Is Such a Badass Plane," 3 May 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about reversal

Statistics for reversal

Last Updated

23 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reversal

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for reversal

reversal

noun

English Language Learners Definition of reversal

: a change to an opposite state, condition, decision, etc.

reversal

noun
re·​ver·​sal | \ ri-ˈvər-səl How to pronounce reversal (audio) \

Kids Definition of reversal

: a change to an opposite or former state, condition, view, or direction

reversal

noun
re·​ver·​sal | \ ri-ˈvər-səl How to pronounce reversal (audio) \

Medical Definition of reversal

: an act or the process of reversing

Keep scrolling for more

reversal

noun
re·​ver·​sal

Legal Definition of reversal

1 : an act or the process of reversing
2 : an instance of reversing the reversal of the lower court's decision

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on reversal

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to speak slightingly about or to degrade

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

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!