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Definition of 'alternate'


  1. someone who takes the place of another person
       Synonyms: surrogate replacement


  1. go back and forth; swing back and forth between two states or conditions
       Synonyms: jump
  2. exchange people temporarily to fulfill certain jobs and functions
  3. be an understudy or alternate for a role
       Synonyms: understudy
  4. reverse (a direction, attitude, or course of action)
       Synonyms: interchange tack switch flip flip-flop
  5. do something in turns; "We take turns on the night shift"
       Synonyms: take turns


  1. every second one of a series; "the cleaning lady comes on alternate Wednesdays"; "jam every other day"- the White Queen
  2. allowing a choice; "an alternative plan"
       Synonyms: alternative
  3. occurring by turns; first one and then the other; "alternating feelings of love and hate"
       Synonyms: alternating
  4. of leaves and branches etc; first on one side and then on the other in two ranks along an axis; not paired; "stems with alternate leaves"
       Antonyms: opposite paired

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