1. A beneficial factor or combination of factors: Being tall is usually an advantage in basketball.
2. Benefit or profit; gain: It is to your advantage to invest wisely.
3. A relatively favorable position; superiority of means: A better education gave us the advantage.
a. The first point scored in tennis after deuce.
b. The resulting score.
5. 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.
tr.v. ad·van·taged, ad·van·tag·ing, ad·van·tag·esIdioms:
To afford profit or gain to; benefit.
take advantage of
1. To put to good use; avail oneself of: take advantage of all educational opportunities.
2. To make use of for selfish reasons; achieve a selfish goal by exploiting: took advantage of him by leaving him with the bill; took advantage of his unsuspecting nature.
3. To seduce.
To good effect; favorably: The roses were displayed to advantage in a blue vase.
[Middle English avantage, from Old French, from avant, before, from Latin abante, from before; see ADVANCE.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.