Definition of bellicose
: favoring or inclined to start quarrels or wars
bellicosityplay \ˌbe-li-ˈkä-sə-tē\ noun
Examples of bellicose in a Sentence
Never in peacetime, perhaps, have the statements of our government officials been more relentlessly bellicose. Yet their actions have been comparatively cautious. —New Yorker, 24 June 1985
For three centuries Viking raiders haunted western Europe. The bellicose Charlemagne himself felt menaced. —Daniel J. Boorstin, The Discoverers, 1983
His evident calm, which always infuriated the opposition, must have irritated the bellicose colonel to a point at which he could control himself no longer. —Michael Pearson, Those Damned Rebels, 1972
bellicose hockey players who always seem to spend more time fighting than playing
Recent Examples of bellicose from the Web
Kenny, the Store’s burly, famously bellicose chef, still mans the kitchen with his son Zack.
For all his campaign rallies last year and bellicose tweets this year, Trump Jr., who along with his brother Eric, 33, remained in N.Y.C. to run the family business, still relishes the quiet of his lifelong loves of hunting and fishing.
Equally damaging: There was no G20 statement on North Korea’s increasingly bellicose threats and actions.
While Indian media have issued shrill warnings about Chinese expansionism, Chinese state media have also ramped up their bellicose rhetoric, with the nationalist tabloid Global Times warning Wednesday that Beijing would make no concessions.
Despite bellicose rhetoric on both sides, President Donald Trump’s attempts to flex his military muscles have been met with opposition by both Russia and China.
As Trump marches further into his presidency, bellicose and beleaguered by the Russian investigation, his administration is being forced to engage with America’s convoluted involvement with the Middle East, on both a military and political level.
But the richest scenery-chewing opportunities are seized by Anthony Hopkins as a bellicose British gent who helps Cade unpack the connection between the Transformers and all that revisionist Arthurian myth.
The atmosphere surrounding the upcoming games is certainly tense—and a backdrop of political conflict between two global superpowers and a bellicose autocracy isn’t helping.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bellicose.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Don't War Over The Meaning of bellicose
Since bellicose describes an attitude that hopes for actual war, the word is generally applied to nations and their leaders. In the 20th century, it was commonly used to describe such figures as Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm, Italy's Benito Mussolini, and Japan's General Tojo, leaders who believed their countries had everything to gain by starting wars. The international relations of a nation with a bellicose foreign policy tend to be stormy and difficult, and bellicosity usually makes the rest of the world very uneasy.
Origin and Etymology of bellicose
Middle English, from Latin bellicosus, from bellicus of war, from bellum war
First Known Use: 15th centurySee Words from the same year
Synonym Discussion of bellicose
BELLICOSE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of bellicose for English Language Learners
: having or showing a tendency to argue or fight
Seen and Heard
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