evaded; evading

intransitive verb

: to slip away
: to take refuge in escape or avoidance

transitive verb

: to elude by dexterity or stratagem
: to avoid facing up to
evaded the real issues
: to avoid the performance of : dodge, circumvent
especially : to fail to pay (taxes)
: to avoid answering directly : turn aside
: to be elusive to : baffle
the simple, personal meaning evaded them C. D. Lewis
evadable adjective
evader noun
Choose the Right Synonym for evade

escape, avoid, evade, elude, shun, eschew mean to get away or keep away from something.

escape stresses the fact of getting away or being passed by not necessarily through effort or by conscious intent.

nothing escapes her sharp eyes

avoid stresses forethought and caution in keeping clear of danger or difficulty.

try to avoid past errors

evade implies adroitness, ingenuity, or lack of scruple in escaping or avoiding.

evaded the question by changing the subject

elude implies a slippery or baffling quality in the person or thing that escapes.

what she sees in him eludes me

shun often implies an avoiding as a matter of habitual practice or policy and may imply repugnance or abhorrence.

you have shunned your responsibilities

eschew implies an avoiding or abstaining from as unwise or distasteful.

a playwright who eschews melodrama

Example Sentences

The criminals have so far managed to evade the police. a politician skilled at evading difficult questions The governor has been accused of evading the issue.
Recent Examples on the Web Omicron and its subvariants evade some of the protection offered by the original vaccine and boosters. Peter Loftus, WSJ, 14 Nov. 2022 The driver then jumped the curb to evade police, heading east on Miles, north on Lander, then briefly eastbound on Harvard Road before turning around in a front yard and cutting back in the opposite direction for I-271 northbound. Thomas Jewell, cleveland, 12 Nov. 2022 For example, a player could evade detection by consulting a computer only occasionally, or by selecting moves that aren’t the engine’s top recommendations, but rather the fourth- or fifth-best. Time, 3 Nov. 2022 Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini try to evade the long arm of the law in the new trailer for the third and final season of Dead to Me, premiering Nov. 17 on Netflix. Jon Blistein, Rolling Stone, 2 Nov. 2022 But as Nigerians look to evade that measure, and to change naira into dollars instead, a consequent shortage of dollars is weakening the naira even further and making inflation worse. Alexander Onukwue, Quartz, 2 Nov. 2022 Diana and her boyfriend, Dodi Al-Fayed, along with their driver, were all killed in 1997 when their car, speeding to evade the paparazzi, crashed into the wall of the Pont de l'Alma tunnel. Elizabeth Logan, Glamour, 12 Oct. 2022 One of the newest subvariants, called BA.2.75.2, can evade immune responses better than all earlier forms of omicron. Carl Zimmer, BostonGlobe.com, 22 Sep. 2022 In a review conducted by NBC News, users were found posting videos with emojis and slight wording variations in hashtags to evade QAnon hashtag bans, bringing attention to the conspiracy theory that helped fuel the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. Ben Goggin, NBC News, 21 Sep. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'evade.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle French & Latin; Middle French evader, from Latin evadere, from e- + vadere to go, walk — more at wade

First Known Use

1513, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of evade was in 1513

Dictionary Entries Near evade

Cite this Entry

“Evade.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/evade. Accessed 28 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition

evaded; evading
: to get away from or avoid by skill or trickery
evade a question
evade capture
: to escape the understanding of
the meaning of the message evaded them
evadable adjective
evader noun

Legal Definition

evaded; evading
: to unlawfully fail to pay (taxes) through fraudulent or deceptive means compare avoid
: to avoid answering directly
trying to evade the question

More from Merriam-Webster on evade

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