Definition of inevitable in US English:



  • 1Certain to happen; unavoidable.

    ‘war was inevitable’
    • ‘Necessarily, failure by some is an inevitable part of the competitive process.’
    • ‘It is also probably inevitable that six geologists will not stay unanimous for very long.’
    • ‘There was, however, an inevitable limit to how far this specialized Asia economic regime could develop.’
    • ‘It recognises that human error is inevitable and should be anticipated.’
    • ‘I would really prefer that people didn't see me as some sort of lunatic, although that is probably inevitable.’
    • ‘Deadly as the shoddy milk powder was, the tragedy was, nevertheless, not inevitable.’
    • ‘The truth is that he lost all his credibility with the Lions in Australia; the end was almost inevitable from then on.’
    • ‘Nick could have been spoilt to bits by his inevitable affection for Kat, had she not been worth falling for.’
    • ‘The results are averaged across the sample and so there is inevitable variation between the men.’
    • ‘Yet he has a very short fuse, perhaps the inevitable result of coping with his blindness in such a pressurised job.’
    • ‘Nothing in politics is inevitable, not if you fight it hard enough.’
    • ‘While works are not a means of salvation, good works are the inevitable result of salvation.’
    • ‘After a flying start to the campaign, it was probably inevitable there would be a City dip sooner or later.’
    • ‘What is inevitable is that we will continue to grow here and invest here.’
    • ‘He insists tax rises, while economically perilous, are inevitable.’
    • ‘Everybody is always trying to hide children from the horrors of life when it is inevitable that they will find them out in the near future.’
    • ‘Some licensees now warn that increased binge drinking will be the inevitable result.’
    • ‘Cognitive decline with age is not inevitable, nor does it necessarily lead to dementia.’
    • ‘To their credit, they struggled on to the final whistle but the result was inevitable.’
    • ‘Oil price rises would be inevitable, adding to industry's energy bill.’
    unavoidable, inescapable, bound to happen, sure to happen, inexorable, unpreventable, assured, certain, for sure, sure, fated, predestined, predetermined, preordained, ineluctable
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    1. 1.1informal So frequently experienced or seen that it is completely predictable.
      ‘the inevitable letter from the bank’
      • ‘It is the dreary, predictable and inevitable question, one to which we have become accustomed.’
      • ‘They have cited the disruption and policing costs that will result from the inevitable protests.’
      • ‘I torment myself with the inevitable failure I'm going to experience writing about these people.’
      • ‘The rest are required to push themselves to the extreme of their ability, and injuries are the inevitable result.’
      • ‘There is no way of defending myself against the inevitable sense of nostalgia that descends in the weeks after Hogmanay.’
      • ‘It's easy to guess the inevitable response because people are genuinely predictable.’
      • ‘Mind you, the hangover will probably have kicked into its inevitable Tired And Crabby phase by then.’
      • ‘During periods of economic boom, firms should look forward to the inevitable downturn which follows.’
      • ‘A strong British navy was expected by the public, as was the inevitable naval victory.’
      foreseeable, to be expected, only to be expected, expected, par for the course
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the inevitable
  • A situation that is unavoidable.

    • ‘They put out such a defensive line-up, it was tempting to conclude that they had accepted the inevitable.’
    • ‘But after resisting the inevitable for so long, they had to opt for change.’
    • ‘It takes courage and wisdom to make the best of an imperfect situation and accept the inevitable.’
    • ‘It was never quite clear what they were fighting for in that battle, to me, they just seemed to be staving off the inevitable.’
    • ‘But in the end, it appeared to be a final, desperate attempt to avoid the inevitable.’


Late Middle English: from Latin inevitabilis, from in- ‘not’ + evitabilis ‘avoidable’ (from evitare ‘avoid’).