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a hostile encounter or engagement between opposing military forces:
the battle of Waterloo.
participation in such hostile encounters or engagements:
wounds received in battle.
a fight between two persons or animals:
ordering a trial by battle to settle the dispute.
any conflict or struggle:
a battle for control of the Senate.
Archaic. a battalion.
to engage in battle:
ready to battle with the enemy.
to work very hard or struggle; strive:
to battle for freedom.
to fight (a person, army, cause, etc.):
We battled strong winds and heavy rains in our small boat.
to force or accomplish by fighting, struggling, etc.:
He battled his way to the top of his profession.
give / do battle, to enter into conflict; fight:
He was ready to do battle for his beliefs.
to furnish (a building or wall) with battlements; crenelate.
Contemporary Examples

The FDA thinks so, and is proposing a label change—but Big Sugar is battling back.
Guess Who Doesn’t Want You to Know How Much Added Sugar Is in Your Food Tim Mak July 18, 2014

Of course, the Catholic Church has been battling modernity since the early Renaissance.
The Will to Disbelieve Jeffrey Hart April 15, 2009

He is battling on alone at a time when the Republican Party has completely collapsed.
John the Plumber v. Barry the Crooner Tina Brown October 15, 2008

Newsweek: So you’re battling in the memoir against the accepted versions that have come out so far.
Donald Rumsfeld on What Went Right John Barry February 7, 2011

For better than a year now, the self-declared leader of “21st century socialism” has been battling an assortment of demons.
Hugo Chávez Wins Reelection and Looks to the Future Mac Margolis October 13, 2012

Historical Examples

He hadn’t the sense to realise that Lean Bear was only battling with him to keep him awake—alive.
Sergeant Silk the Prairie Scout Robert Leighton

Once more, all the powers are battling for possession of the people.
The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete Emile Zola

There stood Alvarado unhorsed and battling, with the savages pressing upon his rear.
Mexico Charles Reginald Enock

The noise from downstairs was as that of a score of battling fiends.
White Fang Jack London

Many of these people were gallant soldiers in the late war, and since 1865 have been battling for the Democratic party in Alabama.
Politics of Alabama J. C. (Joseph Columbus) Manning

a fight between large armed forces; military or naval engagement; combat
conflict; contention; struggle: his battle for recognition
do battle, give battle, join battle, to start fighting
when intr, often foll by against, for, or with. to fight in or as if in military combat; contend (with): she battled against cancer
to struggle in order to achieve something or arrive somewhere: he battled through the crowd
(intransitive) (Austral) to scrape a living, esp by doing odd jobs
a town in SE England, in East Sussex: site of the Battle of Hastings (1066); medieval abbey. Pop: 5190 (2001)
Kathleen. born 1948, US opera singer: a coloratura soprano, she made her professional debut in 1972 and sang with New York City’s Metropolitan Opera (1977–94)

c.1300, from Old French bataille “battle, single combat,” also “inner turmoil, harsh circumstances; army, body of soldiers,” from Late Latin battualia “exercise of soldiers and gladiators in fighting and fencing,” from Latin battuere “to beat, to strike” (see batter (v.)). Phrase battle royal “fight involving several combatants” is from 1670s.

early 14c., “to fight,” from French batailler (12c.), from bataille (see battle (n.)). Related: Battled; battling.

half the battle
losing battle
pitched battle


Read Also:

  • Battology

    wearisome repetition of words in speaking or writing. n. “needless repetition in speaking or writing,” c.1600, from Greek battologia “a speaking stammeringly,” from battos “stammerer,” of imitative origin, + -logia (see -logy).

  • Battologize

    to repeat (a word, phrase, mannerism, etc.) excessively. (of writing or speaking) to repeat words, phrases, etc., to an excessive and tiresome degree.

  • Battologist

    wearisome repetition of words in speaking or writing. n. “needless repetition in speaking or writing,” c.1600, from Greek battologia “a speaking stammeringly,” from battos “stammerer,” of imitative origin, + -logia (see -logy).

  • Battue

    Hunting. the beating or driving of game from cover toward a stationary hunter. a hunt or hunting party using this method of securing game. undiscriminating slaughter of defenseless or unresisting crowds. Historical Examples Having had a long morning’s ride, our first day’s battue was closed early. Rambles in the Islands of Corsica and Sardinia Thomas […]

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