What does antithesis mean?

Definitions for antithesis
ænˈtɪθ ə sɪs; -ˌsizan·tithe·sis

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word antithesis.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. antithesisnoun

    exact opposite

    "his theory is the antithesis of mine"

  2. antithesisnoun

    the juxtaposition of contrasting words or ideas to give a feeling of balance


  1. antithesisnoun

    A proposition that is the diametric opposite of some other proposition.

  2. antithesisnoun

    A device by which two contrasting ideas are juxtaposed in parallel form.

  3. Etymology: From +.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary


    in the plural antitheses. Opposition of words or sentiments; contrast; as in these lines:

    Etymology: ἀντίϑεσις, placing in opposition.

    Though gentle, yet not dull,
    Strong without rage, without o’erflowing, full. John Denham.

    I see a chief, who leads my chosen sons,
    All arm’d with points, antitheses, and puns. Alexander Pope, Dunciad.


  1. Antithesis

    Antithesis (Greek for "setting opposite", from ἀντί "against" and θέσις "placing") is used in writing or speech either as a proposition that contrasts with or reverses some previously mentioned proposition, or when two opposites are introduced together for contrasting effect. This is based on the logical phrase or term.Antithesis can be defined as "a figure of speech involving a seeming contradiction of ideas, words, clauses, or sentences within a balanced grammatical structure. Parallelism of expression serves to emphasize opposition of ideas".An antithesis must always contain two ideas within one statement. The ideas may not be structurally opposite, but they serve to be functionally opposite when comparing two ideas for emphasis.According to Aristotle, the use of an antithesis makes the audience better understand the point the speaker is trying to make. Further explained, the comparison of two situations or ideas makes choosing the correct one simpler. Aristotle states that antithesis in rhetoric is similar to syllogism due to the presentation of two conclusions within a statement.Antitheses are used to strengthen an argument by using either exact opposites or simply contrasting ideas, but can also include both. They typically make a sentence more memorable for the reader or listener through balance and emphasis of the words.


  1. antithesis

    Antithesis is a rhetorical device in which two contrasting or opposing ideas are directly juxtaposed or expressed in close association, often in a balanced or symmetrical manner. It can also refer to the absolute opposite of something or someone.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Antithesisnoun

    an opposition or contrast of words or sentiments occurring in the same sentence; as, "The prodigal robs his heir; the miser robs himself." "He had covertly shot at Cromwell; he how openly aimed at the Queen."

  2. Antithesisnoun

    the second of two clauses forming an antithesis

  3. Antithesisnoun

    opposition; contrast

  4. Etymology: [L., fr. Gr. , fr. to set against, to oppose; 'anti` against + to set. See Thesis.]


  1. Antithesis

    Antithesis is used when two opposites are introduced in the same sentence, for contrasting effect.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Antithesis

    an-tith′e-sis, n. a figure in which thoughts or words are set in contrast: a counter-thesis, counter-proposition: opposition: the contrast:—pl. Antith′esēs.—n. Ant′ithet (rare), an instance of antithesis.—adjs. Antithet′ic, -al.—adv. Antithet′ically. [Gr.; anti, against, tithēmi, to place.]

Suggested Resources

  1. antithesis

    Song lyrics by antithesis -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by antithesis on the Lyrics.com website.

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How to pronounce antithesis?

How to say antithesis in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of antithesis in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of antithesis in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of antithesis in a Sentence

  1. Thomas Sowell:

    Force is the antithesis of freedom, but force must be used, if only to defend against other force.

  2. Andrew Raisman:

    They’re the antithesis of the kind of slick, technical shoes that had dominated the sneaker world for a long time, a 15-year-old kid and a 50-year-old man dress the same now.

  3. Evan Charest:

    Pretty much it's the antithesis of all pro-Valentine's Day things, we thought we would be a place for single people and, you know, people in relationships who just want to get over all the pressure and stress of the Valentine's Day holidays.

  4. Gavin Clarkson:

    Masked militiamen are the antithesis of what a free republic looks like. I absolutely condemn their lawless activities.

  5. Bo Counts:

    How do you social distance in a place that is the antithesis of social distancing? And if you can't, how do you survive? that's the big question a lot of us in this business in Arkansas have been asking ourselves.

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Translations for antithesis

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"antithesis." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 14 Jul 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/antithesis>.

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    a (usually canopied) seat for riding on the back of a camel or elephant
    A defilement
    B swag
    C rung
    D howdah

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