Meaning of “paradox” in the English Dictionary

"paradox" in English

See all translations

paradoxnoun [ C or U ]

uk /ˈpær.ə.dɒks/ us /ˈper.ə.dɑːks/
paradoxical
adjective uk /ˌpær.əˈdɒk.sɪ.kəl/ us /ˌper.əˈdɑːk.sɪ.kəl/

C2

It seems paradoxical to me, but if you drink a cup of hot tea it seems to cool you down.
paradoxically
adverb uk /ˌpær.əˈdɒk.sɪ.kəl.i/ us /ˌper.əˈdɑːk.sɪ.kəl.i/

The big thing in video equipment is, paradoxically, sound.

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

"paradox" in American English

See all translations

paradoxnoun [ C ]

us /ˈpær·əˌdɑks/

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 us /ˌpær·əˈdɑk·sɪ·kəl/

a paradoxical quality
paradoxically
adverb us /ˌpær·əˈdɑk·sɪ·kli/

The hot thing in video equipment is, paradoxically, sound.

(Definition of “paradox” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

Help us add to the Cambridge Dictionary!

These examples are from external sources. Click on the icon to tell us if any are not OK.

paradox

Biofuels were blamed for this paradox.
We have a real paradox here.
The paradox, however, is that war has never been so close, and that, if disarmament is the objective of this war, disarmament is, in fact, taking place.
I think this is a paradox.
However, the paradox of democracy is that it contains the possibility of its own death, in allowing the expression of populist and extremist opinions which erode the democratic system itself.
There is a certain paradox, that often enough we see what is happening far away from us better than what is happening next door.
There is a paradox here!
There is some kind of paradox here.
Now that everything can be bought and sold, we have the apparent paradox of radio frequencies being treated as a commodity, auctioned to the highest bidder.
What a paradox this is!