Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A beneficial factor or combination of factors.
  • noun Benefit or profit; gain.
  • noun A relatively favorable position; superiority of means.
  • noun The first point scored in tennis after deuce.
  • noun The resulting score.
  • noun Sports A situation in soccer in which the referee has signaled that a foul has been committed but delays making the call because the fouled team has a more favorable position in play. If the fouled team loses this favorable position, the referee then makes the call.
  • transitive verb To afford profit or gain to; benefit.
  • idiom (take advantage of) To put to good use; avail oneself of.
  • idiom (take advantage of) To make use of for selfish reasons; achieve a selfish goal by exploiting.
  • idiom (take advantage of) To seduce.
  • idiom (to advantage) To good effect; favorably.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Any state, condition, circumstance, opportunity, or means specially favorable to success, prosperity, interest, reputation, or any desired end; anything that aids, assists, or is of service: as, he had the advantage of a good constitution, of an excellent education; the enemy had the advantage of elevated ground; “the advantages of a close alliance,” Macaulay.
  • noun Superiority or prevalence: regularly with of or over.
  • noun Benefit; gain; profit.
  • noun Usury; interest; increase.
  • noun A thirteenth article added to a dozen, making what is commonly known as a baker's dozen.
  • noun In lawn-tennis, the first point gained after deuce. Commonly called vantage. See lawn-tennis.
  • noun To overreach or impose upon
  • noun To utilize as a means toward overreaching or imposition.
  • noun Synonyms and Advantage, Benefit, Utility, Profit, help, vantage-ground, good, service. Advantage is the possession of a good vantage-ground for the attainment of ulterior objects of desire: as, he has the advantage of a good education. Benefit is a more immediate and realized good: as, a chief benefit of exercise is the improvement of health. Utility is usefulness in the practical or material sense: the utility of an education is a small part of the benefit derived from it. Profit signifies gain, with a suggestion of trade or exchange. A man may have good advantages, but derive from them little benefit or profit; even their utility to him may be small.
  • To benefit; be of service to; yield profit or gain to.
  • To gain ground or win acceptance for; promote or further.
  • To increase, as by interest.
  • Reflexively, to cause to be an advantage to; avail (one's self).
  • To gain an advantage; be benefited.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun Any condition, circumstance, opportunity, or means, particularly favorable to success, or to any desired end; benefit.
  • noun Superiority; mastery; -- with of or over.
  • noun Superiority of state, or that which gives it; benefit; gain; profit.
  • noun obsolete Interest of money; increase; overplus (as the thirteenth in the baker's dozen).
  • noun (Tennis) The first point scored after deuce.
  • noun [R.] vantage ground.
  • noun to have a personal knowledge of one who does not have a reciprocal knowledge.
  • noun to profit by; (often used in a bad sense) to overreach, to outwit.
  • transitive verb To give an advantage to; to further; to promote; to benefit; to profit.
  • transitive verb [Obs.] to avail one's self of.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Any condition, circumstance, opportunity or means, particularly favorable to success, or to any desired end.
  • noun Superiority; mastery; — used with of to specify its nature or with over to specify the other party.
  • noun Superiority of state, or that which gives it; benefit; gain; profit; as, the advantage of a good constitution.
  • noun tennis The score where one player wins a point after deuce but needs the next too to carry the game.
  • noun soccer The continuation of the game after a foul against the attacking team, because the attacking team are in a advantageous position.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun benefit resulting from some event or action
  • noun the quality of having a superior or more favorable position
  • verb give an advantage to
  • noun (tennis) first point scored after deuce

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English avantage, from Old French, from avant, before, from Latin abante, from before; see advance.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English avantage, avauntage, from Old French avantage, from avant ("before"), from Medieval Latin abante. The spelling with d was a mistake, a- being supposed to be from Latin ad (see advance). For sense development, compare foredeal.

Examples

  • It is true that the advantage or benefit of insurance does not consist in adding anything to the wealth of a company, but only consists in drawing from the premiums paid into its treasury by the policy holders generally, to meet each death claim which arises; or can only be called an _advantage of distribution_, or process of collecting aid from the living members, to assist the representatives or dependents of the deceased ones; but it is not the less on this account an advantage worth _same expense_ in securing.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 455, September 20, 1884

  • The main advantage is immediate recognition of the problem so that it can be solved before it grows worse.

    The Quiet Coup

  • Their main advantage is that another group has expressed interest in the Hyatt for Labor Day weekend 2012 and will be making a decision within a very few months.

    News from the Chicago Bid

  • The main advantage is that each participating computer has a local copy of the sync'd files for offline access.

    Backup Maker Offers Dead Simple Backup Creation | Lifehacker Australia

  • The main advantage is immediate recognition of the problem so that it can be solved before it grows worse.

    The Quiet Coup

  • Its main advantage is the authentic separation from anything else in the category.

    SciFi, Fantasy & Horror Collectibles - Part 1116

  • The main advantage is that the propulsive energies required to go to many destinations within the inner solar system, such as Mars orbit, Lagrange points, near Earth asteroids and even Venus orbit, are quite similar.

    Griffin Beg-a-thon Update - NASA Watch

  • Their main advantage is that another group has expressed interest in the Hyatt for Labor Day weekend 2012 and will be making a decision within a very few months.

    Stromata Blog:

  • The main advantage is that the propulsive energies required to go to many destinations within the inner solar system, such as Mars orbit, Lagrange points, near Earth asteroids, and even Venus orbit, are quite similar.

    Leroy Chiao Seeks Your Input - NASA Watch

  • "Its main advantage is that it generates votes at a fairly reliable pace."

    N.M. teams emphasize that every vote counts

Comments

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  • He was advantageously born into a rich family.

    March 30, 2007