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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Avoid \A*void"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Avoided; p. pr. & vb. n. Avoiding.] [OF. esvuidier, es (L. ex) + vuidier, voidier, to empty. See Void, a.]

  1. To empty. [Obs.]

  2. To emit or throw out; to void; as, to avoid excretions. [Obs.]
    --Sir T. Browne.

  3. To quit or evacuate; to withdraw from. [Obs.]

    Six of us only stayed, and the rest avoided the room.

  4. To make void; to annul or vacate; to refute.

    How can these grants of the king's be avoided?

  5. To keep away from; to keep clear of; to endeavor no to meet; to shun; to abstain from; as, to avoid the company of gamesters.

    What need a man forestall his date of grief. And run to meet what he would most avoid ?

    He carefully avoided every act which could goad them into open hostility.

  6. To get rid of. [Obs.]

  7. (Pleading) To defeat or evade; to invalidate. Thus, in a replication, the plaintiff may deny the defendant's plea, or confess it, and avoid it by stating new matter.

    Syn: To escape; elude; evade; eschew.

    Usage: To Avoid, Shun. Avoid in its commonest sense means, to keep clear of, an extension of the meaning, to withdraw one's self from. It denotes care taken not to come near or in contact; as, to avoid certain persons or places. Shun is a stronger term, implying more prominently the idea of intention. The words may, however, in many cases be interchanged.

    No man can pray from his heart to be kept from temptation, if the take no care of himself to avoid it.

    So Chanticleer, who never saw a fox, Yet shunned him as a sailor shuns the rocks.


vb. (en-past of: avoid)

Usage examples of "avoided".

When he had gone, seeing that the affair might take a tragic turn, I began to examine with De la Haye how it could be avoided, but we had not long to puzzle our imagination, for in less than half an hour an officer of the Infante of Parma presented himself, and requested me to repair immediately to head-quarters, where M.

I avoided her at first, but she came up to me reproaching me for my rudeness.

Henceforth she avoided me so skilfully that I never could contrive another interview with her.

I found out that the interest felt towards me by my friends had induced them to obtain for me the honour of kissing the hand of Her Majesty the Queen, and I hastened my preparations to leave Naples, for the queen would certainly have asked me some questions, and I could not have avoided telling her that I had just left Martorano and the poor bishop whom she had sent there.

I glanced at her, but she avoided meeting my eye, while the pretended brother was looking at me so attentively that he did not hear what was said to him.

They taught me likewise how to behave in the company of quarrelsome duellists, the society of whom ought to be avoided, unless we make up our mind to be constantly in the very teeth of danger.

Madame Gennaro was very angry and told my newly-found cousin that he might have avoided enacting such a scene before her husband, knowing his disease, but he answered that he never thought the circumstance likely to provoke mirth.

At those words, the brute threw his knife at her face, but she avoided it by running away.

Disgusted at the manner in which that man had attempted to get hold of me, I no longer felt any inclination to try my fortune with his mistress, for it seemed evident that they were conspiring together to make a dupe of me, and as I had no wish to afford them that gratification I avoided them in the evening.

I could easily imagine that his writings must have given great offence at Rome, and that with sounder judgment he would have avoided this danger.

My heart was beating quickly, but seeing that it was a man I avoided him, and regretted not having brought my pistols.

If I had not cruelly sent back to you the key of the casino, I should most likely have returned there, and should have avoided the sorrow as well as the physical pains which I am now suffering as an expiation.

I would have forgiven him if he had not forced me to a public exposure, which I could only have avoided with the loss of my honour.

He has avoided this sin that his soul may remain pure, and so as not to have the shame of confessing it to his chaplain.

I avoided the gibbet which, however, should not have dishonored me as I should only have been hung.