June 27, 2012
- reverse (verb)
- What does it mean?
- 1 : to turn completely about or upside down or inside out2a : to overthrow or set aside a legal decision by an opposite decision b : to change to the contrary3a : to go or cause to go in the opposite direction b : to put (as a car) into reverse4 : to undo the effect of (as a condition)
- How do you use it?
- Many of the students have signed a petition requesting that the principal reverse her ruling that forbids the wearing of hats in class.
- Are you a word wiz?
Which one of these words do you think is a synonym of "reverse"?"Reverse," "invert," and "transpose" all mean to change to the opposite position. "Reverse" is the most general term and may imply a change in order, side, direction, or meaning (as in "reversed his position on the issue"). "Invert" applies chiefly to turning upside down or inside out ("a stamp with an inverted picture of an airplane"), while "transpose" suggests changing the position, order, or sequence of something ("a typo showing the date as 1846 instead of 1864").