set (something or someone) against; setting (something or someone) against; sets (something or someone) against
Definition of set (something or someone) against
1 : to put (something) in a place or position so that it is touching (something else) He set the ladder against the wall.
2 : to cause the action of (a film, story, etc.) to happen in (a certain place or during a certain time) —often used as be set againstThe story is set against (the backdrop of) the Second World War.
3 : to compare (something) to (something else) Let's set the advantages against the disadvantages. —often used as (be) set againstThe fines were small when set against the company's huge annual profits.
4 British : to list (something) as an expense in order to reduce (income for which tax is due) You can set your mortgage payments against your rental income.
5 : to cause (someone) to disagree with or oppose (someone) The incident set brother against brother.
Love words? Need even more definitions?Merriam-Webster unabridged
Words at Play
Ask the Editors
- A Thanksgiving Word Quiz Take the quiz
- Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz Take the quiz
- Spell It Take the quiz
- Dictionary Devil Play the game