un·der·dog | \ ˈən-dər-ˌdȯg \

Definition of underdog 

1 : a loser or predicted loser in a struggle or contest

2 : a victim of injustice or persecution

Examples of underdog in a Sentence

I always root for the underdog instead of the favorite. As a lawyer, she consistently represented the underdog.

Recent Examples on the Web

Louisville City hasn't often been an underdog; the club reached at least the Eastern Conference finals in each of its first three seasons, culminating in a USL Cup title last fall. Danielle Lerner, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville City FC's latest Open Cup win signals a bright future," 6 June 2018 Photo: toby melville/Reuters Rodina was an underdog under all circumstances. Tom Perrotta, WSJ, "At Wimbledon, Serena Is the Last American Woman Standing," 6 July 2018 And Belgium gets to be the underdog again, a status that Martínez revels in. Tariq Panja, New York Times, "World Cup 2018: Belgium Shocks Japan With Stunning Rally," 4 July 2018 Bayside will be the underdog because League City American just defeated Seabrook’s boys in a nine-inning thriller earlier this week. Robert Avery, Houston Chronicle, "Bayside 11s defeat Texas City 12-11 to clinch berth in District 14 title contest," 28 June 2018 But after an odd 24-2 win in the wild card game, New York traveled to Green Bay and was an eight-point underdog in a divisional-round meeting with the 15-1 Packers. Chris Chase, For The Win, "15 most surprising finalists in sports history," 28 May 2018 To say King is an underdog in the race is an understatement. Gray Rohrer, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Chris King shakes up Democratic primary in governor race," 22 May 2018 Most political experts, and even many Republicans, agree whoever the GOP nominated would be an underdog to Brown. Scott Wartman, Cincinnati.com, "Ohio U.S. Senate race: Should Renacci's primary showing worry Republicans?," 11 May 2018 No matter whom Miami draws, and even with all of the first-round possibilities except Toronto weakened in some way, the Heat still is the big underdog at least in perception. Greg Cote, miamiherald, "Of the four teams the Heat might face in the playoffs, fans should hope it isn’t this one | Miami Herald," 5 Apr. 2018

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

1859, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for underdog

Last Updated

9 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for underdog

The first known use of underdog was in 1859

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More Definitions for underdog



English Language Learners Definition of underdog

: a person, team, etc., that is expected to lose a contest or battle

: a less powerful person or thing that struggles against a more powerful person or thing (such as a corporation)


un·der·dog | \ ˈən-dər-ˌdȯg \

Kids Definition of underdog

: a person or team thought to have little chance of winning (as an election or a game)

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Comments on underdog

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