Meaning of “the lesser of two evils” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"the lesser of two evils" in British English

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the lesser of two evils

the less unpleasant of two choices, neither of which is good:

But allowing a criminal to go free is perhaps the lesser of two evils if the alternative is imprisoning an innocent person.

(Definition of “the lesser of two evils” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"the lesser of two evils" in American English

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the lesser of two evils

something that is bad, but not as bad as something else:

I had the choice of going with my parents to a concert or staying at my grumpy aunt's house – I chose my aunt's house as the lesser of two evils.

(Definition of “the lesser of two evils” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)