Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “paradox”

paradox

noun [C]  /ˈpær·əˌdɑks/ us  
a statement or situation that may be true but seems impossible or difficult to understand because it contains two opposite facts or characteristics: It’s a strange paradox that people who say you shouldn’t criticize the government criticize it as soon as they disagree with it.
paradoxical
adjective  /ˌpær·əˈdɑk·sɪ·kəl/ us  
a paradoxical quality
paradoxically
adverb  /ˌpær·əˈdɑk·sɪ·kli/ us  
The hot thing in video equipment is, paradoxically, sound.
(Definition of paradox from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of paradox?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Difficult to understand, but you might be interested in these topics from the Knowing and understanding topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “paradox” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

sling

to throw or drop something carelessly

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More