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ambiguity

[am-bi-gyoo-i-tee]
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noun, plural am·bi·gu·i·ties.
  1. doubtfulness or uncertainty of meaning or intention: to speak with ambiguity; an ambiguity of manner.
  2. an unclear, indefinite, or equivocal word, expression, meaning, etc.: a contract free of ambiguities; the ambiguities of modern poetry.
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Origin of ambiguity

1375–1425; late Middle English ambiguite < Latin ambiguitās, equivalent to ambigu(us) ambiguous + -itās -ity
Related formsnon·am·bi·gu·i·ty, noun, plural non·am·bi·gu·i·ties.

Synonyms

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1. vagueness, deceptiveness. 2. equivocation.

Antonyms

1. explicitness, clarity.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for ambiguity

ambiguity

noun plural -ties
  1. the possibility of interpreting an expression in two or more distinct ways
  2. an instance of this, as in the sentence they are cooking apples
  3. vagueness or uncertainty of meaningthere are several ambiguities in the situation
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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

Word Origin and History for ambiguity

n.

c.1400, "uncertainty, doubt, indecision, hesitation," also from Medieval Latin ambiguitatem (nominative ambiguitas) "double meaning, equivocalness, double sense," noun of state from ambiguus (see ambiguous).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper