Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


From one enemy of Robert the transition is brief and natural to another.

Having a partiality for Robert, this was not likely to recommend his enemy in her eyes.

They were built upon high cliffs and rumor had it that no enemy could take them.

How little has been the effect of this example on the conduct of the enemy!

We cannot expect to make everyone our friend, but we can try to make no one our enemy.

If a man had once been with them he could only leave them to become an enemy.

Let me know any intelligence you may gain of the enemy's strength or movements.

Had this corps been well trained the enemy must have been beaten.

Suddenly the door is pulled open with a jerk and our enemy leaps in.

Every creature whose rival I could possibly become is my enemy.


early 13c., from Old French enemi (12c.), earlier inimi (9c.) "enemy, adversary, foe, demon, the Devil," from Latin inimicus "hostile, unfriendly; an enemy" (source of Italian nemico, Catalan enamic, Spanish enemigo, Portuguese inimigo), from in- "not" (see in- (1)) + amicus "friend" related to amare "to love" (see Amy).

Most words for "personal enemy" cover also "enemy in war," but certain languages have special terms for the latter, e.g. Greek polemioi (distinct from ekhthroi), Latin hostis, originally "stranger" (distinct from inimicus), Russian neprijatel' (distinct from vrag).

Russian vrag (Old Church Slavonic vragu) is cognate with Lithuanian vargas "misery" (see urge), and probably is related to Proto-Germanic *wargoz, source of Old Norse vargr "outlaw," hence "wolf;" Icelandic vargur "fox," Old English wearg "criminal, felon;" which likely were the inspirations for J.R.R. Tolkien's warg "a kind of large ferocious wolf" in "The Hobbit" (1937) and "Lord of the Rings." Related: Enemies.


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.