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[uh-vurt] /əˈvɜrt/
verb (used with object)
to turn away or aside:
to avert one's eyes.
to ward off; prevent:
to avert evil; to avert an accident.
Origin of avert
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Middle French avertirLatin āvertere, equivalent to ā- a-4 + vertere to turn
Related forms
avertedly, adverb
averter, noun
avertible, avertable, adjective
unaverted, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for avert
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • I am now happy, if by my death, as by my life, I can avert from her evil that otherwise might overtake her.

    Zenobia William Ware
  • If they tremble down the fine-skinned cheek, let us avert our gaze.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • From that fate in the end only Lynborough himself could rescue her; only the man who threatened her with it could avert it.

    Helena's Path Anthony Hope
  • I did all that in honor could be done to avert the war, but without avail.

  • The steersman whirled his wheel swiftly in the apparent endeavor to avert a collision.

    Jim Spurling, Fisherman Albert Walter Tolman
British Dictionary definitions for avert


verb (transitive)
to turn away or aside: to avert one's gaze
to ward off; prevent from occurring: to avert danger
Derived Forms
avertible, avertable, adjective
Word Origin
C15: from Old French avertir, from Latin āvertere; see averse
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for avert

c.1400, from Old French avertir (12c.), "turn, direct; avert; make aware," from Vulgar Latin *advertire, from Latin avertere "to turn away, to drive away," from ab- "from, away" (see ab-) + vertere "to turn" (see versus). Related: Averted; averting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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