circumvent

To circumvent is to avoid. Someone who trains elephants but somehow gets out of picking up after them has found a way to circumvent the cleaning of the circus tent.

Circum in Latin means "around" or "round about," and vent- comes from venire, "to come," but painting a picture from these two parts of the word helps. Picture someone circling around a barrier instead of climbing over it. That's what you do when you circumvent. You find a smart way around rules or barriers, or avoid doing something unpleasant altogether.

Definitions of circumvent
  1. verb
    surround so as to force to give up
    synonyms: beleaguer, besiege, hem in, surround
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    types:
    blockade, seal off
    impose a blockade on
    ebb
    hem in fish with stakes and nets so as to prevent them from going back into the sea with the ebb
    type of:
    assail, attack
    launch an attack or assault on; begin hostilities or start warfare with
  2. verb
    avoid or try to avoid fulfilling, answering, or performing (duties, questions, or issues)
    synonyms: dodge, duck, elude, evade, fudge, hedge, parry, put off, sidestep, skirt
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    types:
    beg, beg the question
    dodge, avoid answering, or take for granted
    quibble
    evade the truth of a point or question by raising irrelevant objections
    type of:
    avoid
    stay clear from; keep away from; keep out of the way of someone or something
  3. verb
    beat through cleverness and wit
    synonyms: beat, outfox, outsmart, outwit, overreach
    beat, beat out, crush, shell, trounce, vanquish
    come out better in a competition, race, or conflict
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    type of:
    exceed, outdo, outgo, outmatch, outperform, outstrip, surmount, surpass
    be or do something to a greater degree
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