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encounter

[en-koun-ter] /ɛnˈkaʊn tər/
verb (used with object)
1.
to come upon or meet with, especially unexpectedly:
to encounter a new situation.
2.
to meet with or contend against (difficulties, opposition, etc.):
We encounter so many problems in our work.
3.
to meet (a person, military force, etc.) in conflict:
We will encounter the enemy at dawn.
verb (used without object)
4.
to meet, especially unexpectedly or in conflict:
We were angry when we encountered, but we parted with smiles.
noun
5.
a meeting with a person or thing, especially a casual, unexpected, or brief meeting:
Our running into each other was merely a chance encounter.
6.
a meeting of persons or groups that are in conflict or opposition; combat; battle:
Another such encounter and we may lose the war.
7.
Psychology. a meeting of two or more people, as the members of an encounter group or a number of married couples (marriage encounter) conducted to promote direct emotional confrontations among the participants, especially as a form of therapy (encounter therapy)
Origin of encounter
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English encountren < Anglo-French enco(u)ntrer; Old French < Vulgar Latin *incontrāre, equivalent to in- in-1 + -contrāre, derivative of contrā against; see counter3
Related forms
encounterer, noun
preencounter, noun, verb (used with object)
reencounter, verb, noun
unencountered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for encountered
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • So he thought: “It seems now that at last I have encountered ghosts.”

  • And he went to gain the other pond, when he encountered Father Etienne.

    En Route J.-K. (Joris-Karl) Huysmans
  • I exclaimed, as we encountered a figure that was perfectly familiar to me.

    A Middy of the King Harry Collingwood
  • She went out sobbing, and encountered Bruno at the head of the stairs.

    Earl Hubert's Daughter Emily Sarah Holt
  • If they had encountered him now, they might have reversed their opinion.

    Heart and Science Wilkie Collins
British Dictionary definitions for encountered

encounter

/ɪnˈkaʊntə/
verb
1.
to come upon or meet casually or unexpectedly
2.
to come into conflict with (an enemy, army, etc) in battle or contest
3.
(transitive) to be faced with; contend with: he encounters many obstacles in his work
noun
4.
a meeting with a person or thing, esp when casual or unexpected
5.
a hostile meeting; contest or conflict
Derived Forms
encounterer, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French encontrer, from Vulgar Latin incontrāre (unattested), from Latin in-² + contrā against, opposite
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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Word Origin and History for encountered

encounter

n.

c.1300, "meeting of adversaries, confrontation," from Old French encontre "meeting; fight; opportunity," noun use of preposition/adverb encontre "against, counter to" from Late Latin incontra "in front of," from Latin in- "in" (see in- (2)) + contra "against" (see contra). Modern use of the word in psychology is from 1967, from the work of U.S. psychologist Carl Rogers (1902-1987). Encounter group attested from 1967.

v.

c.1300, "to meet as an adversary," from Old French encontrer "confront," from encontre (see encounter (n.). Weakened sense of "casually meet" first recorded in English early 16c. Related: Encountered; encountering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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