A "result" or "consequence" is the what happens as a result of the concept of the word. For example: War -- death, suffering, winner, looser, etc. Is there a word that can describe the opposite meaning of the result of a concept? Perhaps an antonym for "result" or "consequence"?

  • Thank you Elliott sometimes the obvious is out of reach; my mind is suffering from tunnel vision. What I might have been looking for is, in the War example, the opposite effects. I think upshot is getting close to that. Not quite Peace, but its causes. Dec 8, 2014 at 3:44
  • The opposite is nothing at all. Or everything.
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 21, 2017 at 22:40
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    We need an example. What is something that is not the result of losing?
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 21, 2017 at 23:04
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    If war leads to death and death is a "result", then by opposite of "result" do you mean a word for the thing(s) that lead to war? Or for the thing(s) that war does not lead to? Or for...?
    – 1006a
    Mar 22, 2017 at 5:43

2 Answers 2


The cause (with result being synonymous with effect).

Merriam-Webster defines cause as,

cause   noun

: something or someone that produces an effect, result, or condition : something or someone that makes something happen or exist

It further lists, the following (bold added for emphasis) -

Antonyms aftereffect, aftermath, consequence, corollary, development, effect, fate, fruit, issue, outcome, outgrowth, product, result, resultant, sequel, sequence, upshot


The word antecedent works well here. From Dictionary.com -


  1. preceding; prior:
    • an antecedent event.


  1. a preceding circumstance, event, object, style, phenomenon, etc.

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