They won't be called one's 'enemies' because they are not actively opposed or hostile to one. They won't be one's adversaries, opponents or rivals either since there is no contest, conflict or dispute between. But they are people who are not on good terms with someone for any reason. For example, religious intolerance or feelings of general dislike due to differences of social class or standard of living, language, lifestyle etc.

There is a specific word in our native language to match the description that I have given above and I am interested to know if there is an English equivalent of it.

P.S.: Please feel free to edit this topic if it's not clear enough.

  • 1
    See this SE Q&A about "the bane of my existence".
    – user21497
    Jan 15, 2013 at 4:10

6 Answers 6


Incompatible, hostile, aversion and at odds.

Mutual loathing, mutual aversion. Having a mutually averse relationship.

Having hostile aversion towards each other.

Being mutually antipathetic. Antipathetic towards each other: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/antipathetic

an·tip·a·thet·ic (n-tp-thtk) also an·tip·a·thet·i·cal (--kl)

  1. Having or showing a strong aversion or repugnance: antipathetic to new ideas.
  2. Opposed in nature or character; antagonistic: antipathetic factions within the party.

Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003

Causing a feeling of antipathy; repugnant:
  1. antipathetic - (usually followed by `to') strongly opposed; "antipathetic to new ideas"; "averse to taking risks"; "loath to go on such short notice"; "clearly indisposed to grant their request"
  2. antipathetic - characterized by antagonism or antipathy; "slaves antagonistic to their masters"; "antipathetic factions within the party"

Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


persona non grata comes to mind:

persona non grata Latin [pɜːˈsəʊnə nɒn ˈgrɑːtə]

n pl personae non gratae [pɜːˈsəʊniː nɒn ˈgrɑːtiː]

  1. an unacceptable or unwelcome person

  2. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) a diplomatic or consular officer who is not acceptable to the government or sovereign to whom he or she is accredited

From the FreeDictionary.com


In Britain, we say of such a person he's not one of us - for more than one, they're not like us.


You're looking for a word that describes the individuals. The best I can think of is antagonist. From NOAD:

antagonist (n.) a person who actively opposes or is hostile to someone

However, I think it may be better to describe the situation in your question by describing the relationship, using an idiom like no love lost. For example:

There is no love lost between William and Theodore.

means that they don't like each other, to the point where they probably hold a grudge against each other.

I've heard the idiom used to describe relationships where the parties involved generally give each other the cold shoulder, although open hostilities can break out, given the right provocation. Also, it can be applied to individuals, or to groups:

In our company, there’s no love lost between the marketing department and the engineers.

would suggest that the personnel in those two departments generally get along as well as the Capulets and the Montagues (figuratively speaking, of course; I don't mean to imply they routinely get into swordfights).


The two of them are said to be

And, if they don't even talk to each other, they are

or simply

  • not speaking

The Other is an individual who is perceived by the group as not belonging, as being different in some fundamental way. Any stranger becomes the Other. The group sees itself as the norm and judges those who do not meet that norm (that is, who are different in any way) as the Other.

from http://academic.brooklyn.cuny.edu/english/melani/cs6/other.html

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