advantage 1 Advantage, handicap, allowance, odds, edge denote a factor or set of factors in a competition or rivalry giving one person or side a position of superiority over the other.
Advantage is the general term, and implies superiority of any kind

the adult, with trained powers, has an immense advantage over the child in the acquisition of information— Eliot

A handicap is something, typically an artificial advantage, designed to equalize competition; thus, in golf, the handicap assigned a player is the difference between the average of a certain number of his best scores and par for the course; for instance, if the player’s best-score average is 75 and par is 72, his handicap is 3, and when he plays in a handicap match the player is allowed to deduct three strokes from his total score.
An allowance is an advantageous handicap stated as a deduction of some sort.
In horse racing an allowance is a deduction from the weight that the rules require a horse to carry, granted to a horse considered to be at a disadvantage.
Odds usually implies a material advantage as in strength, numbers, or resources. It is often used of such an advantage possessed by the opposite side

managed to beat the odds against him— O’Leary


the peculiarly British quality . . . of sticking out against oddsContemporary Review

Advantage is often stated as a difference, odds as a ratio

one boxer has an advantage of ten pounds in weight


one army has odds of two to one over the other

Odds may also denote an equalizing concession made to an inferior competitor; it then differs from handicap and allowance in that the concession is made by the superior competitor and not assigned by a third party

each side feels that it cannot allow any odds to the other— Bryce

Edge may be an equivalent of advantage or odds but usually implies a slight but decisive superiority

here we have the edge on our rivals, not only because of our superior location, but also because we are reputedly reckless about reducing prices— Publishers’ Weekly

Analogous words: preeminence, superlativeness (see corresponding adjectives at SUPREME): *supremacy, ascendancy
Antonyms: disadvantage: handicap (in extended sense)
Contrasted words: *obstacle, obstruction, impediment, bar
2 *use, service, account, profit, avail
Analogous words: improvement, betterment (see corresponding verbs at IMPROVE): enhancement, heightening (see corresponding verbs at INTENSIFY): benefit (see corresponding verb at BENEFIT)
Antonyms: detriment
Contrasted words: harm, hurt, damage, *injury

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

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  • Advantage — Ad*van tage (?; 61, 48), n. [OE. avantage, avauntage, F. avantage, fr. avant before. See {Advance}, and cf. {Vantage}.] 1. Any condition, circumstance, opportunity, or means, particularly favorable to success, or to any desired end; benefit; as,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Advantage — may refer to:*A beneficial factor or combination of factors. *In tennis, advantage is when one player wins a point from a deuce and needs one more point to win the game. (See Tennis terminology#A) *In association football (soccer), advantage is a …   Wikipedia

  • advantage — [ad vant′ij, ədvant′ij] n. [ME avantage, avauntage < OFr avantage < avant, before < L ab + ante: see ADVANCE] 1. a more favorable position; superiority: often with of or over 2. a favorable or beneficial circumstance, event, etc. 3. gain …   English World dictionary

  • Advantage 2 U — (Пуне,Индия) Категория отеля: Адрес: Flat 504, Tower 13, Blue Ridge Co.Op. Hsg. Soc …   Каталог отелей

  • Advantage — Ad*van tage, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Advantaged}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Advantaging}.] [F. avantager, fr. avantage. See {Advance}.] To give an advantage to; to further; to promote; to benefit; to profit. [1913 Webster] The truth is, the archbishop s own… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • advantage — (n.) early 14c., avantage, position of being in advance of another, from O.Fr. avantage advantage, profit, superiority, from avant before, probably via an unrecorded L.L. *abantaticum, from L. abante (see ADVANCE (Cf. advance)). The d is a 16c.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • advantage — ► NOUN 1) a condition or circumstance that puts one in a favourable position. 2) Tennis a score marking a point interim between deuce and winning the game. ► VERB ▪ be of benefit to. ● take advantage of Cf. ↑take advantage of …   English terms dictionary

  • advantage — I noun accommodation, aid, approval, ascendancy, asset, assistance, authority, avail, behoof, benefit, choice, convenience, dominance, easement, edge, eminence, expedience, favor, favorable opportunity, favoring circumstance, gain, good, head… …   Law dictionary

  • advantage — [n] benefit, favored position or circumstance aid, ascendancy, asset, assistance, authority, avail, blessing, boon, break, choice, comfort, convenience, dominance, edge, eminence, expediency, favor, gain, good, gratification, help, hold,… …   New thesaurus

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