Advertisement

avoid (v.)

late 14c., "shun (someone), refrain from (something), have nothing to do with (an action, a scandal, etc.), escape, evade," from Anglo-French avoider "to clear out, withdraw (oneself)," partially Englished from Old French esvuidier "to empty out," from es- "out" (see ex-) + vuidier "to be empty," from voide "empty, vast, wide, hollow, waste," from Latin vocivos "unoccupied, vacant," related to vacare "be empty," from PIE *wak-, extended form of root *eue- "to leave, abandon, give out."

In Middle English with a wide range of meanings now obsolete: "to empty, rid, take out, remove, discharge from the body, send away; eject or banish; destroy, erase; depart from or abandon, go away." Current sense corresponds to Old French eviter with which it perhaps was confused. Related: Avoided; avoiding.

Others are reading

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of avoid

avoid (v.)
stay clear from; keep away from; keep out of the way of someone or something;
Her former friends now avoid her
avoid (v.)
prevent the occurrence of; prevent from happening;
Let's avoid a confrontation
Synonyms: debar / forefend / forfend / obviate / deflect / avert / head off / stave off / fend off / ward off
avoid (v.)
refrain from doing something;
He should avoid publishing his wife's memories
avoid (v.)
refrain from certain foods or beverages;
During Ramadan, Muslims avoid tobacco during the day
Synonyms: keep off
avoid (v.)
declare invalid;
Synonyms: invalidate / annul / quash / void / nullify
From wordnet.princeton.edu