Meaning of CONTRARY in English
I. con ‧ tra ‧ ry 1 AC /ˈkɒntrəri $ ˈkɑːntreri/ BrE AmE noun
1 . on the contrary/quite the contrary used to add to a negative statement, to disagree with a negative statement by someone else, or to answer no to a question:
It wasn’t a good thing; on the contrary it was a huge mistake.
‘I suppose your wife doesn’t understand you.’ ‘On the contrary, she understands me very well.’
‘Are they happy?’ ‘No, no, quite the contrary.’
2 . evidence/statements etc to the contrary something showing or saying the opposite:
Unless there is evidence to the contrary, we ought to believe them.
He continued to drink despite advice to the contrary.
3 . the contrary formal the opposite of what has been said or suggested
II. contrary 2 AC BrE AmE adjective
1 . contrary ideas, opinions, or actions are completely different and opposed to each other SYN opposing :
Two contrary views emerged.
The men shouted contrary orders.
The government’s actions are contrary to the public interest.
2 . contrary to popular belief/opinion used to say that something is true even though people believe the opposite:
Contrary to popular belief, a desert can be very cold.
3 . formal a contrary wind is not blowing in the direction you want to sail
III. con ‧ tra ‧ ry 3 /kənˈtreəri $ ˈkɑːntreri, kənˈtreri/ BrE AmE adjective
someone who is contrary deliberately does different things from other people:
Evans was his usual contrary self.
—contrariness noun [uncountable]
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English. Longman - Словарь современного английского языка. 2012