1. The coexistence of opposing attitudes or feelings, such as love and hate, toward a person, object, or idea.
2. Uncertainty or indecisiveness as to which course to follow.
[German Ambivalenz : Latin ambi-, ambi- + Latin valentia, vigor (from valēns, valent-, present participle of valēre, to be strong; see wal- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots).]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.