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Source : Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

Avoid \A*void"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Avoided}; p. pr. & vb. n.
   {Avoiding}.] [OF. esvuidier, es (L. ex) + vuidier, voidier,
   to empty. See {Void}, a.]
   1. To empty. [Obs.] --Wyclif.

   2. To emit or throw out; to void; as, to avoid excretions.
      [Obs.] --Sir T. Browne.

   3. To quit or evacuate; to withdraw from. [Obs.]

            Six of us only stayed, and the rest avoided the
            room.                                 --Bacon.

   4. To make void; to annul or vacate; to refute.

            How can these grants of the king's be avoided?

   5. To keep away from; to keep clear of; to endeavor no to
      meet; to shun; to abstain from; as, to avoid the company
      of gamesters.

            What need a man forestall his date of grief. And run
            to meet what he would most avoid ?    --Milton.

            He carefully avoided every act which could goad them
            into open hostility.                  --Macaulay.

   6. To get rid of. [Obs.] --Shak.

   7. (Pleading) To defeat or evade; to invalidate. Thus, in a
      replication, the plaintiff may deny the defendant's plea,
      or confess it, and avoid it by stating new matter.

   Syn: To escape; elude; evade; eschew.

   Usage: To {Avoid}, {Shun}. Avoid in its commonest sense
          means, to keep clear of, an extension of the meaning,
          to withdraw one's self from. It denotes care taken not
          to come near or in contact; as, to avoid certain
          persons or places. Shun is a stronger term, implying
          more prominently the idea of intention. The words may,
          however, in many cases be interchanged.

                No man can pray from his heart to be kept from
                temptation, if the take no care of himself to
                avoid it.                         --Mason.

                So Chanticleer, who never saw a fox, Yet shunned
                him as a sailor shuns the rocks.  --Dryden.

Avoid \A*void"\, v. i.
   1. To retire; to withdraw. [Obs.]

            David avoided out of his presence.    --1 Sam.
                                                  xviii. 11.

   2. (Law) To become void or vacant. [Obs.] --Ayliffe.

Source : WordNet®

     v 1: stay clear from; keep away from; keep out of the way of
          someone or something; "Her former friends now avoid her"
          [ant: {confront}]
     2: prevent the occurrence of; prevent from happening; "Let's
        avoid a confrontation"; "head off a confrontation"; "avert
        a strike" [syn: {debar}, {obviate}, {deflect}, {avert}, {head
        off}, {stave off}, {fend off}, {ward off}]
     3: refrain from doing something; "She refrains from calling her
        therapist too often"; "He should avoid publishing his
        wife's memoires"
     4: refrain from certain foods or beverages; "I keep off drugs";
        "During Ramadan, Muslims avoid tobacco during the day"
        [syn: {keep off}]
     5: declare invalid; "The contract was annulled"; "void a plea"
        [syn: {invalidate}, {annul}, {quash}, {void}, {nullify}]
        [ant: {validate}]
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