opportunity


opportunity
opportunity, occasion, chance, break, time are comparable when they mean a state of affairs or a combination of circumstances favorable to some end.
Opportunity is perhaps the most common of these terms; it applies to a situation which provides an opening for doing something, especially in line with one's inclinations, ambitions, purposes, or desires
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the suspect had both motive and opportunity for the murder

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to keep in the rear of opportunity in matters of indulgence is as valuable a habit as to keep abreast of opportunity in matters of enterprise— Hardy

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on the whole an infant's desire to learn is so strong that parents need only provide opportunityRussell

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to strike out in search of new opportunities in new surroundings— Truman

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Occasion (see also CAUSE 1) carries the basic denotation characteristic of its leading senses—a definite moment or juncture, but it applies only to a moment that provides an opportunity or that calls for or prompts action of a definite kind or nature
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had occasion to prove the seaworthiness of this type of lifeboat in a gale— N. B. Marshall

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he took the occasion to satisfy his desire for revenge

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Occasion may suggest more strongly than opportunity a juncture that provokes or evokes action
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with great things charged he shall not hold aloof till great occasion rise— Kipling

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so long as a child is with adults, it has no occasion for the exercise of a number of . . . virtues . . . required by the strong in dealing with the weak— Russell

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it has also produced and spread occasions for diseases and weaknesses— Dewey

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Chance applies chiefly to an opportunity that comes seemingly by luck or accident
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they had no chance to escape

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it was war that gave Lenin his chance. He might have died in angry exile in Switzerland— Brogan

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Sometimes the word means little more than a fair or a normal opportunity, especially in negative expressions
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the feeling that the system under which we live deprives the majority of the chance of a decent life—Day Lewis

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Break applies to the occasion of a stroke of fortune that is usually good unless the term is qualified (as by an adjective indicating the kind of chance or suggesting its outcome)
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had been haunting ... the tryouts, for two years: and this was her first breakWouk

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ascribe his fortunes to luck, to getting the breaksCozzens

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she always did have a bad break if it was possible to get one— Nevil Shute

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shady folk ... are generally given a fine breakLancaster

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Time denotes a juncture that is well-timed or opportune (as for the execution of one's end or purpose)
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time and tide wait for no man

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the Mozartian scheme, in which the soloist bides his time in full confidence that he will be handsomely rewarded in the end— Kolodin

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the time has come to sift and synthesize the findings— Towster

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this is the time to buy stocks

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Analogous words: *juncture, pass, contingency, emergency: posture, situation, condition, *state

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

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  • Opportunity — may refer to: Opportunity International An International microfinance network that lends to the working poor Opportunity NYC is the experimental Conditional Cash Transfer program being launched in New York City Opportunity, Washington, a city in… …   Wikipedia

  • opportunity — The expressions have (or take, etc.) the (or an, every, etc.) opportunity are followed either by a to infinitive or by of + verbal noun: • I was eager to snatch at every opportunity to get myself established as a writer, film maker, what have you …   Modern English usage

  • Opportunity — Op por*tu ni*ty, n.; pl. {Opportunities}. [F. opportunit[ e], L. opportunitas. See {Opportune}.] 1. Fit or convenient time or situation; a time or place permitting or favorable for the execution of a purpose; a suitable combination of conditions; …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • opportunity — I noun auspiciousness, chance, convenience, copia, fair chance, favorable chance, favorable time, fit time, fitting occasion, fitting time, fortuity, good chance, good fortune, hap, liberty, luck, occasio, occasion, opening, opportune moment,… …   Law dictionary

  • Opportunity — Opportunity, WA U.S. Census Designated Place in Washington Population (2000): 25065 Housing Units (2000): 10827 Land area (2000): 6.689717 sq. miles (17.326288 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000):… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Opportunity, WA — U.S. Census Designated Place in Washington Population (2000): 25065 Housing Units (2000): 10827 Land area (2000): 6.689717 sq. miles (17.326288 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 6.689717 sq. miles… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • opportunity — (n.) late 14c., from O.Fr. opportunite (13c.), from L. opportunitatem (nom. opportunitas) fitness, suitableness, favorable time, from opportunus (see OPPORTUNE (Cf. opportune)). Opportunity cost attested from 1911 …   Etymology dictionary

  • opportunity — [n] lucky chance; favorable circumstances befalling, break*, connection, contingency, convenience, cut*, event, excuse, fair shake*, fighting chance*, fitness, fling*, fortuity, freedom, go*, good fortune, good luck, happening, hope, hour, iron… …   New thesaurus