reverse

adjective
re·​verse | \ri-ˈvərs \

Definition of reverse 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : opposite or contrary to a previous or normal condition reverse order

b(1) : having the back presented to the observer or opponent

(2) : made with one's back to the basketball net a reverse layup

2 : coming from the rear of a military force

3 : acting, operating, or arranged in a manner contrary to the usual

4 : effecting reverse movement reverse gear

5 : so made that the part which normally prints in color appears white against a colored background

reverse

verb
reversed; reversing

Definition of reverse (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to turn completely about in position or direction

b : to turn upside down : invert

c : to cause to take an opposite point of view reversed herself on the issue

2 : negate, undo: such as

a : to overthrow, set aside, or make void (a legal decision) by a contrary decision

b : to change to the contrary reverse a policy

c : to undo or negate the effect of (something, such as a condition or surgical operation) had his vasectomy reversed

3 : to cause to go in the opposite direction especially : to cause (something, such as an engine) to perform its action in the opposite direction

intransitive verb

1 : to turn or move in the opposite direction the count's waltzing … consisted … of reversing at top speed— Agatha Christie

2 : to put a mechanism (such as an engine) in reverse

reverse field or reverse one's field

: to make a sudden reversal in direction or opinion

reverse

noun

Definition of reverse (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : something directly contrary to something else : opposite

2 : an act or instance of reversing especially : defeat, setback suffered financial reverses

3 : the back part of something especially : the side of a coin or currency note that is opposite the obverse

4a(1) : a gear that reverses something also : the whole mechanism brought into play when such a gear is used

(2) : movement in reverse

b : an offensive play in football in which a back moving in one direction gives the ball to a player moving in the opposite direction

in reverse

: in an opposite manner or direction

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Other Words from reverse

Adjective

reversely adverb

Verb

reverser noun

Synonyms for reverse

Synonyms: Verb

switch

Synonyms: Noun

knock, lapse, reversal, setback

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Choose the Right Synonym for reverse

Verb

reverse, transpose, invert mean to change to the opposite position. reverse is the most general term and may imply change in order, side, direction, meaning. reversed his position on the trade agreement transpose implies a change in order or relative position of units often through exchange of position. transposed the letters to form an anagram invert applies chiefly to turning upside down or inside out. the number 9 looks like an inverted 6

Examples of reverse in a Sentence

Adjective

Can you say the alphabet in reverse order? The drug is used to lower blood pressure but may have the reverse effect in some patients.

Verb

The runners reversed their direction on the track. There is no way to reverse the aging process. Can anything reverse the trend toward higher prices? Reverse the “i” and “e” in “recieve” to spell “receive” correctly. My mother and I reversed our roles. Now I'm taking care of her. We're going to reverse our usual order and start with Z.

Noun

The building appears on the reverse of the coin. Please sign your name on the reverse. I put the car in reverse and backed out of the garage.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Amid all this, Tumblr has been a safe harbor of delightful, weird, and deeply human stuff, presented using the radical system known as reverse chronological order. Casey Newton, The Verge, "How Kevin Hart tweeted himself out of a job hosting the Oscars," 8 Dec. 2018 The company also plans to complete a 1-for-10 reverse split of its class A shares in early January. Kimberly Chin, WSJ, "Daniel Och Takes Another Step Back From The Hedge Fund Empire He Built," 6 Dec. 2018 Encounter The reverse fixture at the Santiago Bernabeu was a no contest really ending in a 5-0 victory for the home side. SI.com, "Sevilla vs Real Madrid Preview: Recent Form, Previous Encounter, Team News, Predictions & More," 8 May 2018 Book your passage The Silver Shadow sails again to most of these ports of call (in reverse order, from Singapore to Hong Kong) in January 2019. Christopher Bagley, Condé Nast Traveler, "Sailing the South China Sea Is the Best Way to See Southeast Asia," 15 Nov. 2018 Points were allotted in reverse order: 12 for first, 11 for second, etc. 1. Jon Wilner Pac-12 Hotline, The Seattle Times, "What’s the best job in the Pac-12? Even coaches say there’s an obvious hierarchy," 25 Oct. 2018 The jacks, each one impressive in its own right, are presented below in reverse order. Si.com Staff, SI.com, "Nine Innings: Inside J.D. Martinez's Essential Role With the Red Sox and the Best of Mike Trout," 25 June 2018 At the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, researchers led by Ryan O'Hayre are developing button-size reverse fuel cells. Robert F. Service, Science | AAAS, "Ammonia—a renewable fuel made from sun, air, and water—could power the globe without carbon," 12 July 2018 That would reduce withdrawals from the southern delta that cause harmful reverse flows in delta channels. Bettina Boxall, latimes.com, "Metropolitan Water District again approves delta tunnel funding," 11 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

What’s raised concerns among some conservatives—and what ought to give everyone pause—are measures that would reverse or soften tough-on-crime policies from the 1980s and ’90s. Jason L. Riley, WSJ, "Take a Step Back on the First Step Act," 20 Nov. 2018 Enter: fluoride, a mineral that can reverse tooth decay that would otherwise become a cavity, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. Korin Miller, SELF, "Is It Actually Possible to Get Rid of Cavities Without Fillings?," 17 Oct. 2018 In this op-ed, Nicole Talbot, a 17-year-old girl in Massachusetts who is a spokesperson for the Yes on 3 campaign, explains why the ballot question that could reverse legal protections of transgender people in her state is dangerous. Nicole Talbot, Teen Vogue, "Massachusetts Must Vote Yes on Ballot Question 3 to Protect Transgender Rights," 12 Oct. 2018 You’ve just got to stay on-throttle with your docking maneuvers—go in at an angle with confidence, bang reverse and crank the wheel to bring the stern in. Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "Testing the Yamaha 210 FSH: The Boat That Blew Up the Formula," 31 Aug. 2018 The plane made an emergency stop in Moline, Illinois, where he was revived at Trinity Medical Center with a drug that reverses opioid overdoses. Steve Karnowski, Fox News, "Prince's family sues former doctor who prescribed him pain pills," 24 Aug. 2018 People who overdose on the synthetics may need multiple doses of naloxone, the drug that can reverse an overdose, the CDC added. Maggie Fox /, NBC News, "New synthetic opioids are killing even more people, CDC says," 11 July 2018 Paramedics who respond to cases involving such powerful drugs report needing to administer multiple doses of the drug that can reverse the opioid’s effects, a hint that fentanyl may have been part of the victim’s drug cocktail. Shari Rudavsky, Indianapolis Star, "'Bodies can't take it': Fentanyl involved in nearly half of drug overdose deaths," 2 July 2018 There’s no Narcan-like drug for marijuana that can suddenly reverse its effects. Dan Adams, BostonGlobe.com, "21 questions answered about legal marijuana in Massachusetts," 21 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The company is also reportedly considering adding a reverse wireless charging feature that could allow the S10 models to share battery life with other devices, like another phone or a pair of headphones, similar to Huawei’s Mate 20 Pro. Chaim Gartenberg, The Verge, "Samsung’s 10th anniversary Galaxy might be a 6.7-inch, six-camera flagship with 5G," 20 Nov. 2018 The collection device will act something like a reverse vacuum cleaner. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "NASA’s daring asteroid mission unfurls its sampling arm for the first time," 16 Nov. 2018 If poker has helped Ms. Hulse’s literary career—the book already has sold to 14 territories—the reverse cannot be said. Ellen Gamerman, WSJ, "Researching Your Book? Hit the Casino," 5 Nov. 2018 Just as Venus concludes its retrograde, Mercury begins its own reverse rotation. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What Your Sign's November Horoscope Predictions Mean for You," 28 Oct. 2018 Amid the connotations of dirt and impurity surrounding women’s natural cycles, Feingold wanted to show the reverse. Christina Cacouris, Marie Claire, "This Artist Uses Gold and Glitter to Destigmatize Period Blood," 11 Sep. 2018 That’s, in a way, a win for the Washington Teachers Union, but the same dynamic plays in reverse if, say, WTU wanted to implement a change to DC education policy and Walton wanted to hold the line. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "Billionaires are spending their fortunes reshaping America’s schools. It isn’t working.," 30 Oct. 2018 Alas, for the fourth and final time of 2018, Mercury is going in reverse. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What November's Capricorn Horoscope Means for You," 28 Oct. 2018 Previously, researchers at Trustwave had discovered two malware campaigns against MikroTik routers based on an exploit reverse-engineered from a tool in the Vault7 leak—the first originally targeting routers in Brazil with CoinHive malware. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Unpatched routers being used to build vast proxy army, spy on networks," 5 Sep. 2018

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for reverse

Adjective

Middle English revers, from Anglo-French, from Latin reversus, past participle of revertere to turn back — more at revert

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Statistics for reverse

Last Updated

12 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reverse

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

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More Definitions for reverse

reverse

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of reverse

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: opposite to what is usual or stated

: opposite to the front

reverse

verb

English Language Learners Definition of reverse (Entry 2 of 3)

: to change (something) to an opposite state or condition

: to cause (something, such as a process) to stop or return to an earlier state

: to change the order or position of (two things or a series)

reverse

noun

English Language Learners Definition of reverse (Entry 3 of 3)

the reverse : something that is opposite to something else

the reverse : the back side of a coin, document, etc.

: a change that makes something worse

reverse

adjective
re·​verse | \ri-ˈvərs \

Kids Definition of reverse

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : opposite to a previous, normal, or usual condition reverse order

2 : opposite to the front the reverse side

reverse

verb
reversed; reversing

Kids Definition of reverse (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to turn completely around or upside down or inside out The jacket reverses.

2 : to change the order or position of Reverse the vowels to correctly spell the word.

3 : to change or cause to change to an opposite or former state, condition, or view The court reversed a decision.

4 : to go or cause to go in the opposite direction

reverse

noun

Kids Definition of reverse (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : something opposite to something else : contrary The river flows west to east, not the reverse.

2 : an act or instance of changing to an opposite or former state, condition, view, or direction a reverse of plans

3 : the back part of something the reverse of a coin

4 : a gear that reverses something Put the car in reverse.

reverse

transitive verb
re·​verse | \ri-ˈvərs \
reversed; reversing

Medical Definition of reverse 

: to change drastically or completely the course or effect of: as

a : to initiate recovery from reverse a disease

b : to make of no effect or as if not done reverse a surgical procedure

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reverse

verb
re·​verse
reversed; reversing

Legal Definition of reverse 

transitive verb

: to set aside or make void (a judgment or decision) by a contrary decision — compare affirm

intransitive verb

: to reverse a decision or judgment for these reasons, we reverse

Other Words from reverse

reversible adjective

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Comments on reverse

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