the lesser of two evils Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “the lesser of two evils” in the English 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 ​innocentperson.
(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)
Translations of “the lesser of two evils”
in Chinese (Simplified) 两害相权之轻者…
in Turkish kötünün iyisi, ehvenişer…
in Russian меньшее из двух зол…
in Chinese (Traditional) 兩害相權之輕者…
in Polish mniejsze zło…
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