To contravene means to go against or defy. You might contravene your parents' ban on sweets when your friend offers to share her candy because chocolate tastes too good to resist!

If you contravene something in practice, you act in direct violation of a particular law or rule. Think about the times when someone has told you not to cross a line and you do anyway. You can also contravene in words though, which means you contradict or argue against a statement. Let's say you're debating gun control. If your opponent says that for the safety of all, it should be legal to carry a concealed weapon wherever you go, you might answer that the more concealed weapons there are, the more violence. You are contravening your opponent's argument.

Definitions of contravene
  1. verb
    go against, as of rules and laws
    synonyms: conflict, infringe, run afoul
    see moresee less
    type of:
    breach, break, go against, infract, offend, transgress, violate
    act in disregard of laws, rules, contracts, or promises
  2. verb
    deny the truth of
    synonyms: contradict, negate
    see moresee less
    show 4 types...
    hide 4 types...
    declare untrue; contradict
    make a disclaimer about
    reject as untrue, unfounded, or unjust
    refuse to acknowledge; disclaim knowledge of; responsibility for, or association with
    type of:
    differ, disagree, dissent, take issue
    be of different opinions
Word Family
F1 image

Express yourself in 25 languages

  • Learn immersively - no memorization required
  • Build skills for real-world conversations
  • Get immediate feedback on your pronunciation
Get started for $7.99/month