Contronym

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A contronym is a word with two meanings. These two meanings are the opposites of each other.

Examples
  • bolt: secure, run away
He bolted the door, When he got scared, he bolted
  • cleave - split, adhere
The bow of the boat cleaved the water cleanly,He cleaved to his principles in spite of persecution
  • clip: fasten, detach
He clipped the pin to his shirt, She used scissors to clip her hair
  • constrained - forced into a certain path or action, prohibited from certain paths or actions
To please my spouse, I am constrained to hire my brother-in-law, To avoid nepotism, I am constrained to hire my brother-in-law
  • consult: seek information, refer information to
They consulted us about best practices," "They consulted us with best practices"
  • dust - remove particles, lay down particles
He dusted the picture frames, She dusted the cookies with powdered sugar
  • execute - to start or begin, to kill or finish
We will execute our plan at midnight, The traitor was executed at dawn
  • fast - quick, unmoving
He ran very fast, He pulled on the rope, but it held fast
  • fix - restore, castrate
He fixed the broken table, They had their puppy fixed
  • left - remaining, departed from
After taking an apple, there were two left, He opened the door and left
  • moot - open to debate, settled beyond debate
The car's value is moot, Your dating that boy is moot
  • off - off, on
He turned the lights off, When the window broke, the alarm went off
  • rent - buy use of, sell use of
He rented a room to make extra money, She was looking for a house to rent
  • transparent - invisible, obvious
The glass was transparent, His motives were transparent
  • sanction - bless, punish
The priest sanctioned the marriage, The US government sanctioned Cuba
  • seed - to plant seeds, to remove seeds
The children seeded the ground with pumpkin seeds, They seeded the watermelon before they served it
  • variety - one type, many types
Granny Smith is a variety of apple, The store sells a variety of produce
  • virago - loud overbearing woman, woman of stature and strength
My mother-in-law is such a virago, My mother is such a virago
  • weather - to wear away, to withstand
his skin was weathered, the boat weathered the storm well