ar·​gu·​men·​ta·​tive | \ ˌär-gyə-ˈmen-tə-tiv How to pronounce argumentative (audio) \
variants: or less commonly argumentive \ ˌär-​gyə-​ˈmen-​tiv How to pronounce argumentive (audio) \

Definition of argumentative

1 : given to argument : tending to argue : having or showing a tendency to disagree or argue with other people in an angry way : disputatious He became argumentative when confronted with the allegation. an argumentative temperament … had been a pigheaded, argumentative, irascible, and unlikable man …— Colleen McCullough
2 : consisting of or characterized by argument argumentative discourse aired their opinions in an argumentative way

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Other Words from argumentative

argumentatively adverb

Examples of argumentative in a Sentence

He became more argumentative during the debate. he's too argumentative to be part of a project in which teamwork is critical
Recent Examples on the Web Is your objective to change your argumentative uncle’s political views? Anna Goldfarb, New York Times, "How to Defuse Tension at the Dinner Table During the Holidays," 20 Nov. 2019 Scripture was a performative art, such as the intensely emotional and argumentative art of Jewish midrash. Randy Dotinga, The Christian Science Monitor, "Scripture as an art form? Q&A with Karen Armstrong.," 22 Nov. 2019 The software has been trained from more than 30,000 argumentative statements which human reviewers have rated for their persuasiveness in order to build a model based on what makes an argument persuasive to human listeners. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, "IBM Showcases A.I. That Can Parse Arguments In Cambridge Union Debate," 22 Nov. 2019 Queen's inflexible, argumentative nature deepens into compassionate strength, and Kaluuya's soulfulness effortlessly signals how wary Slim is beneath the easygoing surface, reflecting a lifetime of bracing for disappointment — or worse. Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Queen & Slim': Film Review | AFI 2019," 15 Nov. 2019 The man was uncooperative and argumentative, refusing to identify himself. cleveland, "60-year-old man repeatedly urinates in Westgate parking lot: Fairview Park Police Blotter," 30 Oct. 2019 Although on the argumentative front, Cohn out-Trumped Trump. Bill Goodykoontz, azcentral, "Explore the life of 'a nasty Forrest Gump' in gripping Roy Cohn documentary," 2 Oct. 2019 If that is the case, then perhaps running the Monday management meeting should be tilted a bit more toward the Socratic method (a form of cooperative argumentative dialogue, designed to draw out ideas and underlying presuppositions). Neil Senturia, San Diego Union-Tribune, "When the boss needs to step down from the podium and let others speak," 23 Sep. 2019 Taylor became upset, argumentative and combative after the shop said it was fully booked and couldn’t immediately work on his car, according to a news release. Kieran Nicholson, The Denver Post, "Repeat felon guilty of attempted murder for shooting Aurora auto shop owner in the face," 6 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'argumentative.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of argumentative

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for argumentative

see argue

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Time Traveler for argumentative

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The first known use of argumentative was in the 15th century

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Statistics for argumentative

Last Updated

14 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Argumentative.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 25 January 2020.

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How to pronounce argumentative (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of argumentative

: tending to argue : having or showing a tendency to disagree or argue with other people in an angry way

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Comments on argumentative

What made you want to look up argumentative? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


dull or mediocre

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