Meaning of COUNTER in English

/ ˈkaʊntə(r); NAmE / noun , verb , adverb

■ noun


a long flat surface over which goods are sold or business is done in a shop / store, bank, etc. :

I asked the woman behind the counter if they had any postcards.


( especially NAmE ) = worktop


a small disc used for playing or scoring in some board games

—picture at backgammon

—see also bargaining counter


(especially in compounds) an electronic device for counting sth :

The needle on the rev counter soared.

—see also Geiger counter

—compare bean counter


[ usually sing. ] counter (to sb/sth) ( formal ) a response to sb/sth that opposes their ideas, position, etc. :

The employers' association was seen as a counter to union power.


- over the counter

- under the counter

■ verb


counter (sb/sth) (with sth) to reply to sb by trying to prove that what they said is not true :

[ vn ]

Such arguments are not easily countered.

[ v that ]

I tried to argue but he countered that the plans were not yet finished.

[also v speech , v ]


[ vn ] to do sth to reduce or prevent the bad effects of sth

SYN counteract :

Businesses would like to see new laws to counter late payments of debts.

■ adverb

counter to sth in the opposite direction to sth; in opposition to sth :

The government's plans run counter to agreed European policy on this issue.



noun senses 1 to 4 Middle English (in sense 3): from Old French conteor , from medieval Latin computatorium , from Latin computare calculate, from com- together + putare to settle (an account).

noun sense 5 and verb adjective late Middle English : from Old French contre , from Latin contra against, or directly from counter- .

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.