encounter Definition

  • 1to meet someone unexpectedly
  • 2a meeting, especially one that happens by chance
  • 3to experience something, especially something unpleasant

Using encounter: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "encounter" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    I encountered an old friend on the street.

  • Example

    We encountered a lot of traffic on the way to the airport.

  • Example

    She encountered many difficulties while trying to learn a new language.

  • Example

    The hikers encountered a bear in the woods.

encounter Synonyms and Antonyms

Synonyms for encounter

Antonyms for encounter

Phrases with encounter

  • a meeting that happens unexpectedly or by accident


    Their chance encounter at the coffee shop led to a lifelong friendship.

  • a group therapy session in which participants openly express their emotions and feelings


    She signed up for an encounter group to help her deal with her anxiety.

  • a situation in which someone has a direct and potentially dangerous encounter with something, such as a UFO or wild animal


    He claimed to have had a close encounter with a UFO while camping in the woods.

Origins of encounter

from Old French 'encontre', from Latin 'incontra', meaning 'against'


Summary: encounter in Brief

The verb 'encounter' [ɪnˈkaʊntə] refers to meeting someone or experiencing something unexpectedly. It can be used to describe both positive and negative experiences, such as 'I encountered an old friend on the street' or 'She encountered many difficulties while trying to learn a new language.' 'Encounter' is often used in phrases like 'chance encounter,' 'encounter group,' and 'close encounter.'

How do native speakers use this expression?