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Is there a good phrase or word that means the opposite of "coexist"?

The phrase I am using it in is similar to "these two ideas need not (be) __."

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3 Answers 3

up vote 17 down vote accepted

Mutually exclusive

Two things that can't happen at the same time.


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I knew the phrase exists! That's sounds exactly what I was looking for, thanks! –  Ivan Oct 1 '11 at 2:58
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"These two (noun)s need not _____"

Some ideas:

  1. Disagree
  2. Differ
  3. Conflict
  4. Contradict
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Depends on the context but in many instances the opposite of coexistence is persecution.

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Persecution isn't suitable for the context given in the question, grammatically or semantically. –  Bradd Szonye Apr 23 '13 at 21:22
Also, exist derives from Latin existĕre, which you will note is a Latin conjugation other than the 1st (-are) conjugation — and therefore does not take -ance in English but rather -ence. These things matter. –  tchrist Apr 23 '13 at 21:25
I didn't read the phrase. Yes, given the context, "persecution" is not a valid answer. –  Jason Powell Hundley Apr 24 '13 at 20:14
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