encounter-n; 4 Senses

Sense Number 1: a casual, brief meeting with someone

Commentary: ENCOUNTER[+event][+meeting][+casual][+brief]

A chance encounter with a movie producer got John a part in a motion picture.
Mary suspected her frequent encounters in the hall with Bob were no accident.
I had a strange encounter with Sally's mother yesterday.

PropBank: encounter.01
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 2

Sense Number 2: an exposure to an influence or situation

Commentary: ENCOUNTER[+event][+exposure][+to_influence]

Their child's encounter with a life-threatening illness changed their lives.
The pilot spoke of one incident where he had a near encounter with death.
The professor said his encounter with quantum mechanics at an early age drew him to physics.

PropBank: NM
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 3

Sense Number 3: a physical fight, skirmish

Commentary: ENCOUNTER[+event][+confrontation][+physical][+fight]

The young soldiers were nervous about their first encounter with the enemy.
It was a deadly encounter that left five commandos dead.
The assailant's encounter with the police ended with his arrest.

PropBank: NM
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 1

Sense Number 4: confrontational interaction, showdown

Commentary: ENCOUNTER[+event][+confrontation][+social][+showdown]

The CEO wanted to avoid another encounter with the Board at the next meeting.
The loud encounters between her neighbors kept Mary awake at night.
They are headed for a major encounter with China over this trade agreement.

PropBank: NM
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 4