The effects of cold and drought stress on antioxidant responses and growth parameters in shoots and roots of lentil (Lens culinaris M cv Sultan 1) seedlings were investigated. Ten-day-old hydroponically grown seedlings were subjected to drought and cold (4 degrees C) stress for 5 days. The length and fresh weight of shoots decreased significantly under both stress conditions, contrary to the increase in these growth parameters for roots under the same conditions. The oxidative damage as:generation of malondialdehyde and hydrogen peroxide, was markedly higher in shoots under cold. Both stress conditions caused a significant increase in malondialdehyde levels in root tissues. The increase in proline levels was more pronounced under cold stress in shoots and roots. The tested stress conditions had no significant effect on chlorophyll contents. Superoxide dismutase activity was differentially altered in shoot and root tissues under drought and cold stress. The catalase activity was higher in roots under drought stress. On the other hand, ascorbate peroxidase activity increased in root tissues under cold stress. The results indicate that improved tolerance to cold and drought stress in root and shoot tissues of lentil might be correlated to the increased capacity of antioxidative defense system.