Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of against
Meaning of against by Wiktionary Dictionary


    Alternative forms

    • againest ( obsolete )
    • agaynst ( obsolete )
    • agaynest ( obsolete )
    • agenst ( obsolete )
    • agenest ( obsolete )
    • ageinst ( obsolete )
    • ageinest ( obsolete, rare )
    • ageynst ( obsolete )
    • ageynest ( obsolete, rare )
    • agin ( colloquial or humorous )


    Formed from Middle English agenes, againes ( “in opposition to” ), a southern variant of agen, or directly from again, either way with adverbial genitive singular ending -es; the parasitic -t was added circa 1350, probably by confusion with the superlative ending -est .


    • ( UK ) IPA: /əˈɡɛnst/, /əˈɡeɪnst/, X-SAMPA: /@"gEnst/, /@"geInst/
    • ( US ) IPA: /əˈɡɛnst/, X-SAMPA: /@"gEnst/
    • Hyphenation: a‧gainst



    1. In a contrary direction to .
      If you swim against the current, you must work harder .
    2. Close to .
    3. In front of; before a background .
      The giant was silhouetted against the door .
    4. In physical contact with .
      The puppy rested its head against a paw .
    5. In physical opposition to, or in collision with .
      The rain pounds against the window .
    6. In contrast and/or comparison with .
      He stands out against his local classmates
    7. In competition with, versus .
      The Tigers will play against the Bears this weekend .
    8. In opposition to .
      Are you against freedom of choice?
      I'd bet against his succeeding .
    9. In exchange for .
    10. As counterbalance to .
    11. As a charge on .
    12. As protection from .
      He turned the umbrella against the wind .
    13. ( obsolete ) Exposed to .
    14. In anticipation of; in preparation for ( a particular time, event etc. ).





    1. ( obsolete ) By the time that ( something happened ); before.


    • frequency based on Project Gutenberg corpus">Most common English words before 1923: again · also · away · #147: against · though · get · eyes

Definition of against by GCIDE Dictionary


  1. Against ( ?; 277 ), prep. [OE. agens, ageynes, AS. ongegn. The s is adverbial, orig. a genitive ending. See Again.]
    1. Abreast; opposite to; facing; towards; as, “against the mouth of a river”; -- in this sense often preceded by over.

    Jacob saw the angels of God come against him. Tyndale.

    2. From an opposite direction so as to strike or come in contact with; in contact with; upon; as, “hail beats against the roof”.

    3. In opposition to, whether the opposition is of sentiment or of action; on the other side; counter to; in contrariety to; hence, adverse to; as, “against reason; against law; to run a race against time.”

    The gate would have been shut against her. Fielding.

    An argument against the use of steam. Tyndale.

    4. By of before the time that; in preparation for; so as to be ready for the time when. [Archaic or Dial.]

    Urijah the priest made it, against King Ahaz came from Damascus. 2 Kings xvi. 11.

    Against the sun, in a direction contrary to that in which the sun appears to move.