Meaning of REVERSE in English

I. ri-ˈvərs adjective

Etymology: Middle English revers, from Anglo-French, from Latin reversus, past participle of revertere to turn back — more at revert

Date: 14th century


a. : opposite or contrary to a previous or normal condition

reverse order


(1) : having the back presented to the observer or opponent

(2) : made with one's back to the basketball net

a reverse layup

2. : coming from the rear of a military force

3. : acting, operating, or arranged in a manner contrary to the usual

4. : effecting reverse movement

reverse gear

5. : so made that the part which normally prints in color appears white against a colored background

• re·verse·ly adverb

II. verb

( re·versed ; re·vers·ing )

Date: 14th century

transitive verb


a. : to turn completely about in position or direction

b. : to turn upside down : invert

c. : to cause to take an opposite point of view

reversed herself on the issue

2. : negate , undo : as

a. : to overthrow, set aside, or make void (a legal decision) by a contrary decision

b. : to change to the contrary

reverse a policy

c. : to undo or negate the effect of (as a condition or surgical operation)

had his vasectomy reversed

3. : to cause to go in the opposite direction ; especially : to cause (as an engine) to perform its action in the opposite direction

intransitive verb

1. : to turn or move in the opposite direction

the count's waltzing…consisted…of reversing at top speed — Agatha Christie

2. : to put a mechanism (as an engine) in reverse

• re·vers·er noun

- reverse field


reverse , transpose , invert mean to change to the opposite position. reverse is the most general term and may imply change in order, side, direction, meaning

reversed his position on the trade agreement

transpose implies a change in order or relative position of units often through exchange of position

transposed the letters to form an anagram

invert applies chiefly to turning upside down or inside out

a stamp with an inverted picture of an airplane

III. noun

Date: 14th century

1. : something directly contrary to something else : opposite

2. : an act or instance of reversing ; especially : defeat , setback

suffered financial reverse s

3. : the back part of something ; especially : the side of a coin or currency note that is opposite the obverse



(1) : a gear that reverses something ; also : the whole mechanism brought into play when such a gear is used

(2) : movement in reverse

b. : an offensive play in football in which a back moving in one direction gives the ball to a player moving in the opposite direction

- in reverse

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.