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[noun koun-ter-wurk; verb koun-ter-wurk, koun-ter-wurk] /noun ˈkaʊn tərˌwɜrk; verb ˌkaʊn tərˈwɜrk, ˈkaʊn tərˌwɜrk/
work or action to oppose some other work or action.
verb (used without object)
to work in opposition.
verb (used with object)
to work in opposition to; hinder or frustrate.
Origin of counterwork
First recorded in 1590-1600; counter- + work
Related forms
counter-worker, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for counterwork
Historical Examples
  • Grote wrote his history of Greece to counterwork the party bias of Mitford.

    Practical Essays Alexander Bain
  • In that situation, at worst, their nature was left free to counterwork their principles.

    Political Pamphlets George Saintsbury
  • To detect and to counterwork this plot was obviously my duty.

    Arthur Mervyn Charles Brockden Brown
  • My doom was ratified by powers which no human energies can counterwork.

    Edgar Huntley Charles Brockden Brown
  • If the Syracusans succeeded in completing and holding this counterwork, the blockade of Syracuse would be rendered impossible.

  • You are well aware how necessary it is to reconnoitre an enemy to know by what method to counterwork his stratagems.

  • Let it be to abjure thy malice; to counterwork this hellish stratagem; to turn from me and from my brother, this desolating rage!

    Wieland; or The Transformation Charles Brockden Brown
  • The cardinal's disappointment strongly inclined him to counterwork the amorous projects of his rival.

  • His case, he feared, was too sure to prove a sorrowful one, for he knew not how to counterwork their malevolence.

British Dictionary definitions for counterwork


work done in opposition to other work
defensive fortifications put up against attack
Derived Forms
counterworker, noun
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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