A'dversary. n.s. [adversaire, Fr. aversarius, Lat.]
An opponent; antagonist; enemy: generally applied to those that have verbal or judicial quarrels; as, controvertists or litigants: sometimes, to an opponent in single combat. It may sometimes imply an open profession of enmity; as we say, a secret enemy is worse than an open adversary.
Yet am I noble, as the adversary
I come to cope. Shakespeare's King Lear.
Those rites and ceremonies of the church, therefore, which were the self-same now that they were, when holy and virtuous men maintained them against profane and deriding adversaries, her own children have in derision. Hooker, b. i § 1.
Mean while th' adversary of God and man,
Satan, with thoughts inflam'd, of highest design,
Puts on swift wings. Milton's Paradise Lost, b. ii. l. 620.
An adversary, on the contrary, makes a stricter search into us, and discovers every flaw and imperfection in our tempers. A friend exaggerates a man's virtues; an enemy inflames his crimes. Addison. Spectator, № 399.