Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of cross-purpose
Meaning of cross-purpose by Wiktionary Dictionary

cross-purpose


    Alternative forms

    Noun

    cross-purpose ( plural: cross-purposes )

    1. ( idiomatic ) A contrary or conflicting purpose or understanding, especially an unintentional or misconceived one .
      We are working at cross-purposes here, if you're trying to reduce the count and I'm trying to increase it .
    2. ( dated ) A conversational game, in which questions and answers are made so as to involve ludicrous combinations of ideas .
      ( Can we find and add a quotation of Samuel Pepys to this entry? )

    Derived terms



Explanation of cross-purpose by Wordnet Dictionary

cross-purpose


    Noun
    1. a contrary aim

    2. at cross-purposes


    Definition of cross-purpose by GCIDE Dictionary

    cross-purpose


    1. cross-purpose ( -p?rp?s ), n.
      1. A counter or opposing purpose; a contrary aim; hence, that which is inconsistent or contradictory. Shaftesbury.

      2. pl. A conversational game, in which questions and answers are made so as to involve ludicrous combinations of ideas. Pepys.

      To be at cross-purposes, to misunderstand or to act counter to one another without intending it; -- said of persons.