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To begin your search, go to the alphabetical index below and click on the first letter of the word you are searching for.

adverse, adverse to, averse to

Although these words sound alike, they are not synonyms.

Adverse and adverse to refer to a thing or circumstance that is contrary, against or not in one’s favour.

  • The adverse (contrary) wind delayed the sailors’ arrival.
  • The mercenary felt the capital punishment law was adverse to (did not favour) his profession and his longevity.

Averse to reflects a person’s dislike of or inclination against an activity or situation.

  • She rarely listened to the news because she was averse to hearing about conflict and bloodshed.
  • Brad is not averse to manual labour.

It is a common error to use adverse to when averse to would be the correct choice.

  • Incorrect: Extroverts are not adverse to being the centre of attention.
  • Correct: Extroverts are not averse to being the centre of attention.