counter ( counters plural & 3rd person present) ( countering present participle) ( countered past tense & past participle )
1 n-count In a place such as a shop or café, a counter is a long narrow table or flat surface at which customers are served.
...those fellows we see working behind the counter at our local video rental store., ...the cosmetics counter...
2 verb If you do something to counter a particular action or process, you do something which has an opposite effect to it or makes it less effective.
The leadership discussed a plan of economic measures to counter the effects of such a blockade... V n
Sears then countered by filing an antitrust lawsuit. V by -ing
3 n-sing Something that is a counter to something else has an opposite effect to it or makes it less effective.
a N to n
...NATO's traditional role as a counter to the military might of the Warsaw pact.
4 verb If you counter something that someone has said, you say something which shows that you disagree with them or which proves that they are wrong.
Both of them had to counter fierce criticism... V n
The union countered with letters rebutting the company's claims... V with n
The Prime Minister countered by stating that he had grave misgivings about the advice he had been given... V by -ing
`But Peter, it's not that simple,' Goldstone countered in a firm voice. V with quote, Also V that
5 n-count A counter is a mechanical or electronic device which keeps a count of something and displays the total.
usu supp N
...an answerphone with an LED display call counter.
6 n-count A counter is a small, flat, round object used in board games.
8 If a medicine can be bought over the counter, you do not need a prescription to buy it.
over the counter phrase
Are you taking any other medicines whether on prescription or bought over the counter?, ...basic over-the-counter remedies.
9 Over-the-counter shares are bought and sold directly rather than on a stock exchange. (BUSINESS)
over the counter phrase usu PHR n
10 If one thing runs counter to another, or if one thing is counter to another, the first thing is the opposite of the second thing or conflicts with it.
run/be counter to phrase V inflects, PHR to n
Much of the plan runs counter to European agriculture and environmental policy...
11 If someone buys or sells goods under the counter, they buy or sell them secretly and illegally.
under the counter phrase PHR after v The smugglers allegedly sold the gold under the counter, cheating the VAT man out of £5 million.
bargaining counter ( bargaining counters plural ) A bargaining counter is the same as a bargaining chip.
bean counter ( bean counters plural ) , bean-counter You can describe people such as accountants and business managers as bean counters if you disapprove of them because you think they are only interested in money. n-count
...bean counters who tend to focus on controlling expenses.
Counter- is used to form words which refer to actions or activities that are intended to prevent other actions or activities or that respond to them. prefix
The army now appears to have launched a counter-offensive., ...the chief of counter-terrorist operations., ...a counter-demonstration by anti-war protesters...
counter-argument ( counter-arguments plural )
in AM, usually use counterargument A counter-argument is an argument that makes an opposing point to another argument. n-count
...an attempt to develop a counter-argument to the labor theory.
counter-attack ( counter-attacks plural & 3rd person present) ( counter-attacking present participle) ( counter-attacked past tense & past participle ) , counterattack If you counter-attack, you attack someone who has attacked you. verb
The security forces counter-attacked the following day and quelled the unrest... V
Counter-attack is also a noun., n-count
The army began its counter-attack this morning.
counter-culture ( counter-cultures plural ) , counterculture Counter-culture is a set of values, ideas, and ways of behaving that are completely different from those of the rest of society. n-var
...a history of British counter-culture.
in AM, use counterespionage
Counter-espionage is the same as counter-intelligence. n-uncount
counter-intelligence , counter intelligence, counterintelligence
Counter-intelligence consists of actions that a country takes in order to find out whether another country is spying on it and to prevent it from doing so. n-uncount oft N n
...the FBI's department of counter-intelligence., ...a counter-intelligence officer.
counter-measure ( counter-measures plural ) , countermeasure A counter-measure is an action that you take in order to weaken the effect of another action or a situation, or to make it harmless. n-count
Because the threat never developed, we didn't need to take any real countermeasures.
counter-productive , counterproductive
Something that is counter-productive achieves the opposite result from the one that you want to achieve. adj usu v-link ADJ
In practice, however, such an attitude is counter-productive...
counter-revolution ( counter-revolutions plural )
in AM, also use counterrevolution
1 n-count A counter-revolution is a revolution that is intended to reverse the effects of a previous revolution.
The consequences of the counter-revolution have been extremely bloody.
2 n-uncount You can refer to activities that are intended to reverse the effects of a previous revolution as counter-revolution.
Such actions would be regarded as counter-revolution.
counter-revolutionary ( counter-revolutionaries plural )
in AM, also use counterrevolutionary
1 adj Counter-revolutionary activities are activities intended to reverse the effects of a previous revolution.
2 n-count A counter-revolutionary is a person who is trying to reverse the effects of a previous revolution.
Geiger counter ( Geiger counters plural ) A Geiger counter is a device which finds and measures radioactivity. n-count
lunch counter ( lunch counters plural ) A lunch counter is an informal café or a counter in a shop where people can buy and eat meals.
A rev counter is an instrument in a car or an aeroplane which shows the speed of the engine.