averse


averse
adverse, averse
These two words both come from the Latin word vertere ‘to turn’, but averse (= turning away) means ‘opposed to’ and is typically used in negative contexts of people, whereas adverse (= turning towards, hostilely) is used of things and means ‘opposing one's interests; unfavourable’ (adverse circumstances, adverse weather conditions) or even ‘harmful’ (the adverse effects of drugs):

• The creation of a large source of illegal income has serious adverse consequences —Mirror, 2007

• This proud, but humiliated, most complicated of politicians was not averse to flattery —M. Almond, 1992.

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averse
1. averse, aversion.
Both words are followed by to, despite arguments (notably by Dr Johnson, challenged at some length in the OED) that from should be used. Examples:

• Nor was he averse to being reminded of Calcutta —Anita Desai, 1988

• Vic wasn't averse to keeping Everthorpe guessing whether he and Robyn Penrose were having an affair —David Lodge, 1988

• Dr Mainwaring's prescription had not cured her aversion from the prospect of becoming hopelessly senile in the company of people who knew her —Kingsley Amis, 1974

• He had a lifelong aversion to British officialdom —John Le Carré, 1989.

2. averse, adverse.
See adverse.

Modern English usage. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • averse — [ avɛrs ] n. f. • 1688 averse d eau; de pleuvoir à la verse (1642) → verse ♦ Pluie soudaine et abondante. ⇒ grain, ondée; fam. douche, sauce, saucée; région. drache. Essuyer, recevoir une averse. Averse orageuse. Averse de printemps. ⇒ giboulée.… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Averse — A*verse , a. [L. aversus, p. p. of avertere. See {Avert}.] 1. Turned away or backward. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] The tracks averse a lying notice gave, And led the searcher backward from the cave. Dryden. [1913 Webster] 2. Having a repugnance or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • averse to — having a clear dislike of (something) : strongly opposed to (something) He seems to be averse to exercise. No one is more averse to borrowing money than he is. often used in negative statements She is not averse to taking chances. [=she is willi …   Useful english dictionary

  • averse — averse·ly; averse·ness; averse; …   English syllables

  • averse — ► ADJECTIVE (averse to) ▪ strongly disliking or opposed to. USAGE On the confusion of averse and adverse, see ADVERSE(Cf. ↑adversely). ORIGIN from Latin avertere (see AVERT(Cf. ↑ …   English terms dictionary

  • averse — AVERSE. sub. fém. Pluie subite et abondante. Nous essuyâmes unc averse. Il est familier. ⁶erse. Voy. Verse …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • Averse — A*verse , v. t. & i. To turn away. [Obs.] B. Jonson. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • averse — I adjective adverse, alienus, antagonistic, antipathetic, aversus, disinclined, disliking, hostile, indisposed, inimical, loath, opposed, reluctant, repelled, repugnant, revolted, undesirous, unfavorable, unwilling II index antipathetic …   Law dictionary

  • averse — (adj.) mid 15c., turned away in mind or feeling, from O.Fr. avers and directly from L. aversus turned away, turned back, pp. of avertere (see AVERT (Cf. avert)). Originally and usually in English in the mental sense, while avert is used in a… …   Etymology dictionary

  • averse — 1 *disinclined, indisposed, loath, reluctant, hesitant Analogous words: recoiling, shrinking, flinching, quailing (see RECOIL vb): uncongenial, unsympathetic (see INCONSONANT): balky, *contrary, perverse Antonyms: avid (of or for): athirst (for) …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • averse — [adj] opposing afraid, allergic, antagonistic, antipathetic, contrary, disinclined, disliking, having no use for*, hesitant, hostile, ill disposed, indisposed, inimical, loath, nasty, perverse, reluctant, uneager, unfavorable, unfriendly,… …   New thesaurus