What does subversion mean?

Definitions for subversion
səbˈvɜr ʒən, -ʃənsub·ver·sion

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

Princeton's WordNet

  1. corruption, subversionnoun

    destroying someone's (or some group's) honesty or loyalty; undermining moral integrity

    "corruption of a minor"; "the big city's subversion of rural innocence"

  2. subversion, subversive activitynoun

    the act of subverting; as overthrowing or destroying a legally constituted government


  1. subversionnoun

    the act of subverting or the condition of being subverted

  2. subversionnoun

    a systematic attempt to overthrow a government by working from within; undermining

  3. Etymology: From subversion.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Subversionnoun

    Overthrow; ruin; destruction.

    Etymology: subversion, Fr. subversus, Latin.

    These seek subversion of thy harmless life. William Shakespeare, H. VI.

    It is far more honourable to suffer, than to prosper in their ruin and subversion. Charles I .

    These things refer to the opening and shutting the abyss, with the dissolution or subversion of the earth. Burnet.

    Laws have been often abused, to the oppression and the subversion of that order they were intended to preserve. John Rogers.


  1. subversion

    Subversion refers to the process or act of undermining, overthrowing, or destabilizing a system, institution, structure or belief, particularly a government or political system. This can involve a variety of methods, including but not limited to, political rebellion, social activism, espionage, propaganda, or military action. It generally refers to actions intended to disrupt or undermine the authority, the integrity, the constitution, or the societal and cultural foundations of a perceived established order or other entity.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Subversionnoun

    the act of overturning, or the state of being overturned; entire overthrow; an overthrow from the foundation; utter ruin; destruction; as, the subversion of a government; the subversion of despotic power; the subversion of the constitution

  2. Etymology: [L. subversio: cf. F. subversion. See Subvert.]

Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms

  1. subversion

    Actions designed to undermine the military, economic, psychological, or political strength or morale of a governing authority. See also unconventional warfare.

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How to pronounce subversion?

How to say subversion in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of subversion in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of subversion in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Examples of subversion in a Sentence

  1. Col. Jack Ripper, commander of Burpleson AFB to Group Capt. Mandrake (Peter Sellers) in Dr. Strangelove:

    (Clemenceau) once said that war is too important to be left to the generals. When he said that, 50 years ago, he may have been right...but now, war is too important to be left to the politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought...And I can no longer, sit around and allow Communist subversion, Communist corruption, and Communist infiltration of our precious bodily fluids.

  2. Steny Hoyer:

    This is a version of a vile, anti-Semitic attack that for centuries has demanded that Jewish people demonstrate some kind of quid pro quo in return for being considered loyal citizens, it is also a dangerous subversion of our American principles that all are entitled to their own views.

  3. Dwight D Eisenhower:

    Here in America we are descended in blood and in spirit from revolutionists and rebels - men and women who dare to dissent from accepted doctrine. As their heirs, may we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion.

  4. Eugene Remer:

    [ Russia’s ] leaders have embraced a wide range of tools — information warfare in all its forms, including subversion, deception, dis - and misinformation, this toolkit has deep historical roots in the Soviet era and performs the function of the equalizer that in the eyes of The Kremlin is intended to make up for Russia’s weakness vis a vis the West.

  5. Harold Rosenberg:

    Only conservatives believe that subversion is still being carried on in the arts and that society is being shaken by it. Advanced art today is no longer a cause --it contains no moral imperative. There is no virtue in clinging to principles and standards, no vice in selling or in selling out.

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Translations for subversion

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • SubversionGerman
  • υπονόμευση, ανατροπήGreek
  • desestabilización, subversiónSpanish
  • kumouksellisuus, kumous, mullistus, [[valtionvastainen]] [[toiminta]]Finnish
  • विनाHindi
  • sovversioneItalian
  • 倒す, 転覆, 破壊Japanese
  • omverwerpingDutch
  • subversãoPortuguese
  • подрывная деятельность, свержение, подрыв, низвержение, низложениеRussian
  • subversionSwedish
  • yıkılma, hükümeti devirme, bozulmaTurkish
  • диверсіяUkrainian
  • 顛覆Chinese

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"subversion." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 20 May 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/subversion>.

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    come up with (an idea, plan, explanation, theory, or principle) after a mental effort
    A excogitate
    B suffuse
    C exacerbate
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