Definition of against preposition from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1For the special uses of against in phrasal verbs, look at the entries for the verbs. For example, count against somebody is in the phrasal verb section at count. opposing or disagreeing with someone or something the fight against terrorism We're playing against the league champions next week. We were rowing against the current. That's against the law. She was forced to marry against her will. Are you for or against the death penalty? She is against seeing (= does not want to see) him. I'd advise you against doing that.
  2. 2not to the advantage or favor of someone or something The evidence is against him. Her age is against her. compare for
  3. 3close to, touching, or hitting someone or something Put the piano there, against the wall. The rain beat against the windows.
  4. 4 in order to prevent something from happening or to reduce the damage caused by something a vaccination against the measles They took precautions against fire. Are we insured against theft?
  5. 5with something in the background, as a contrast His red clothes stood out clearly against the snow. (figurative) The love story unfolds against a background of civil war.
  6. 6 used when you are comparing two things You must weigh the benefits against the cost. Check your receipts against the statement. What's the exchange rate against the euro?
  7. Idioms
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: against