adjective re·bel·lious \-yəs\

: fighting against a government

: refusing to obey rules or authority or to accept normal standards of behavior, dress, etc. : having or showing a tendency to rebel

Full Definition of REBELLIOUS

a :  given to or engaged in rebellion <rebellious troops>
b :  of, relating to, or characteristic of a rebel or rebellion <a rebellious speech>
:  resisting treatment or management :  refractory
re·bel·lious·ly adverb
re·bel·lious·ness noun

Examples of REBELLIOUS

  1. <the rebellious troops fought a pitched battle with divisions still loyal to the government>
  2. <expected her son to grow a little more rebellious as he got older, but she knew he understood when to kick and when to obey>

First Known Use of REBELLIOUS

15th century

Other Government and Politics Terms

agent provocateur, agitprop, autarky, cabal, egalitarianism, federalism, hegemony, plenipotentiary, popular sovereignty, socialism
REBELLIOUS Defined for Kids


adjective re·bel·lious \ri-ˈbel-yəs\

Definition of REBELLIOUS for Kids

:  taking part in rebellion <rebellious troops>
:  fighting against or refusing to obey authority <a rebellious teenager>
re·bel·lious·ly adverb
re·bel·lious·ness noun


Next Word in the Dictionary: rebellyPrevious Word in the Dictionary: rebellionAll Words Near: rebellious
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears