• Advantage


    • UK IPA: /ædˈvɑːn.tədʒ/
    • US IPA: /ædˈvæn.tədʒ/

    Alternative forms


    From Middle English avantage, avauntage, from Old French avantage, from avant ("before"), from Medieval Latin abante. The spelling with d was a mistake, a- being supposed to be from Latin ad (see advance). For sense development, compare foredeal.

    Full definition of advantage



    (plural advantages)
    1. Any condition, circumstance, opportunity or means, particularly favorable to success, or to any desired end.
      The enemy had the advantage of a more elevated position.
      • 2013-06-07, Ed Pilkington, ‘Killer robots’ should be banned in advance, UN told, In his submission to the UN, Christof Heyns points to the experience of drones. Unmanned aerial vehicles were intended initially only for surveillance, and their use for offensive purposes was prohibited, yet once strategists realised their perceived advantages as a means of carrying out targeted killings, all objections were swept out of the way.
      • ShakespeareGive me advantage of some brief discourse.
      • Macaulaythe advantages of a close alliance
    2. (obsolete) Superiority; mastery; — used with of to specify its nature or with over to specify the other party.
      • Bible, 2 Corinthians ii. 11Lest Satan should get an advantage of us.
    3. Superiority of state, or that which gives it; benefit; gain; profit; as, the advantage of a good constitution.
    4. (tennis) The score where one player wins a point after deuce but needs the next too to carry the game.
    5. (soccer) The continuation of the game after a foul against the attacking team, because the attacking team are in a advantageous position.
      • November 17 2012, BBC Sport: Arsenal 5-2 TottenhamWebb played an advantage that enabled Cazorla to supply a low cross from the left for Giroud to sweep home first time, despite Gallas and Vertonghen being in close attendance.
    6. Interest of money; increase; overplus (as the thirteenth in the baker's dozen).
      • ShakespeareAnd with advantage means to pay thy love.

    Related terms


    1. (transitive) To provide (someone) with an advantage, to give an edge to. from 15th c.
    2. (reflexive) To do something for one's own benefit; to take advantage of. from 16th c.
      • 1603, John Florio, trans. Michel de Montaigne, Essays, II.7:No man of courage vouchsafeth to advantage himselfe of that which is common unto many.

    Usage notes

    Some authorities object to the use of advantage as a verb meaning "to provide with an advantage".

    Derived terms

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