I. noun 1. a person or thing that is the direct opposite of someone or something else • love is the antithesis of selfishness.
2. a contrast or opposition between two things • the antithesis between occult and rational mentalities.
3. [ mass noun] — a rhetorical or literary device in which an opposition or contrast of ideas is expressed. • figures of speech such as antithesis.
• [ count noun]
his sermons were full of startling antitheses.
4. [ mass noun] — (in Hegelian philosophy) the negation of the thesis as the second stage in the process of dialectical reasoning.Compare with synthesis.
– origin late Middle English (originally denoting the substitution of one grammatical case for another): from late Latin, from Greek antitithenai ‘set against’, from anti ‘against’ + tithenai ‘to place’. The earliest current sense, denoting a rhetorical or literary device, dates from the early 16th cent.