What does contrary mean?

Definitions for contrary
ˈkɒn trɛr i; for 5 also kənˈtrɛər icon·trary

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word contrary.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. reverse, contrary, opposite(noun)

    a relation of direct opposition

    "we thought Sue was older than Bill but just the reverse was true"

  2. contrary(noun)

    exact opposition

    "public opinion to the contrary he is not guilty"

  3. contrary(adj)

    a logical relation such that two propositions are contraries if both cannot be true but both can be false

  4. contrary(adj)

    very opposed in nature or character or purpose

    "acts contrary to our code of ethics"; "the facts point to a contrary conclusion"

  5. contrary(adj)

    of words or propositions so related that both cannot be true but both may be false

    "`hot' and `cold' are contrary terms"

  6. contrary, obstinate, perverse, wayward(adj)

    resistant to guidance or discipline

    "Mary Mary quite contrary"; "an obstinate child with a violent temper"; "a perverse mood"; "wayward behavior"

  7. adverse, contrary(adj)

    in an opposing direction

    "adverse currents"; "a contrary wind"


  1. contrary(Noun)

    The opposite.

  2. contrary(Noun)

    One of a pair of propositions that cannot both be simultaneously true.

  3. contrary(Verb)

    To oppose; to frustrate.

  4. contrary(Verb)

    To impugn.

  5. contrary(Verb)

    To contradict (someone or something).

  6. contrary(Verb)

    To do the opposite of (someone or something).

  7. contrary(Verb)

    To act inconsistently or perversely; to act in opposition to.

  8. contrary(Verb)

    To argue; to debate; to uphold an opposite opinion.

  9. contrary(Verb)

    To be self-contradictory; to become reversed.

  10. contrary(Adverb)


  11. contrary(Adjective)

    opposed in nature

  12. contrary(Adjective)

    strongly dissimilar

Webster Dictionary

  1. Contrary(adj)

    opposite; in an opposite direction; in opposition; adverse; as, contrary winds

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]

  2. Contrary(adj)

    opposed; contradictory; repugnant; inconsistent

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]

  3. Contrary(adj)

    given to opposition; perverse; forward; wayward; as, a contrary disposition; a contrary child

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]

  4. Contrary(adj)

    affirming the opposite; so opposed as to destroy each other; as, contrary propositions

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]

  5. Contrary(noun)

    a thing that is of contrary or opposite qualities

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]

  6. Contrary(noun)

    an opponent; an enemy

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]

  7. Contrary(noun)

    the opposite; a proposition, fact, or condition incompatible with another; as, slender proofs which rather show the contrary. See Converse, n., 1

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]

  8. Contrary(noun)

    see Contraries

    Etymology: [F. contrarier. See Contrary, a.]


  1. Contrary

    Contrary was a character from Malibu Comics' Ultraverse. She was created by Gerard Jones and Martin Egeland and first appeared in the series Freex, though she was better known as the founder of Ultraforce. Though it has never been truly confirmed, it is heavily implied in Freex that the nurse nicknamed "Wetware Mary" was the same woman who would eventually become Contrary. Both were humans who had access to the advanced technology of the Fire People, and both manipulated people in various ways for their own agendas.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Contrary

    kon′tra-ri, adj. opposite: contradictory—Contra′riant (rare).—n. a thing that is contrary or of opposite qualities.—n.pl. Con′traries, things opposite in quality: (logic) propositions which destroy each other.—n. Contrarī′ety, opposition: inconsistency.—adv. Con′trarily.—n. Con′trariness.—adj. Contrā′rious, showing contrariety: repugnant: opposite.—advs. Contrā′riously, contrarily; Con′trariwise, on the contrary way or side: on the other hand. [L. contrariuscontra, against.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. contrary

    The wind when opposed to a vessel's course. "Cruel was the stately ship that bore her love from Mary, And cruel was the fair wind that wouldn't blow contrary."

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'contrary' in Nouns Frequency: #2504

How to pronounce contrary?

  1. Alex
    US English

How to say contrary in sign language?

  1. contrary


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of contrary in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of contrary in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of contrary in a Sentence

  1. Abbas Naji:

    On the contrary, I stand with them because at that time we were liberated and they removed the tyranny of Saddam Hussein’s regime.

  2. Ursula K. LeGuin:

    Imagination grows by exercise and contrary to common belief is more powerful in the mature than in the young.

  3. Erik Pevernagie:

    Some day we feel the overall picture has slipped away. Only the details of life may help to find the whole ensemble. Our worldview does not comprehend the daily events anymore. Our conception of life is no longer a key for understanding, but is, on the contrary, blocking off our insight. We can, however, create space and time for an uplifting reflection and acquire an "Identity". ("Man without Qualities" )

  4. Executive Philippe Dauman:

    Contrary to what some people have suggested, no one other than Sumner Redstone is making healthcare decisions for Sumner Redstone as it relates to Sumner Redstone physical condition.

  5. David Harris:

    Any fatality, any shooting, any murder of a police officer is a tragedy for that officer, the family and society -- and any one of them is one too many, but there's no evidence of an open war on police. In fact, the evidence is to the contrary.

Images & Illustrations of contrary

  1. contrarycontrarycontrarycontrarycontrary

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for contrary

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for contrary »


Find a translation for the contrary definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Discuss these contrary definitions with the community:


    Word of the Day

    Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

    Please enter your email address:


    Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


    "contrary." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 20 Sep. 2020. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/contrary>.

    Are we missing a good definition for contrary? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for contrary:

    Thanks for your vote! We truly appreciate your support.