bick·​er·​ing | \ ˈbi-k(ə-)riŋ How to pronounce bickering (audio) \

Definition of bickering

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: petty and petulant quarreling especially when prolonged or habitual … said his own bosses, through their persistent bickering, had made his job practically impossible.— Ronald Scott also bickerings plural : instances of such quarreling was tired of listening to their endless bickerings



Definition of bickering (Entry 2 of 2)

: engaging in or characterized by petty and petulant quarreling a bickering couple bickering politicians

Examples of bickering in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Aside from one high-profile slip at the beginning, Gilbert has won plaudits for throttling back his snarky side to keep the House from going off the rails in partisan bickering. Washington Post, 16 Mar. 2022 This seems to be the happy medium in a baseball world that is so committed to the binary bickering of old school vs. Jules Posner, Forbes, 19 Jan. 2022 Democrats invited three historians, including the librarian of Congress, to hold a discussion about the attack as a way to solidify the record of the day’s events at a time when they have been subjected to political bickering. Chris Megerian, Los Angeles Times, 6 Jan. 2022 After hours of continuing, partisan bickering over Jackson, the committee deadlocked in an 11-11 tie vote along party lines rather than reporting it out a favorable or unfavorable recommendation. Edmund H. Mahony,, 4 Apr. 2022 Over the course of the eight episodes, Kate and Anthony are at each other’s throats — bickering, bantering and yet, drawn toward each other despite their seeming disdain. Christy Piña, The Hollywood Reporter, 26 Mar. 2022 Indeed, the president’s speech was clearly an attempt to fulfill at least one of his campaign promises — to end all the partisan bickering, name-calling and ugly attacks that have been the hallmark of American politics in recent years. Los Angeles Times, 2 Mar. 2022 But when the country locked down, date night was the furthest thing from our minds, overtaken by school closures and work-from-home bickering, our new favorite pastime. Washington Post, 17 Dec. 2021 From there, Noella questioned whether Heather previously put her hands on a crew member during her sushi party — an accusation that resulted in the pair bickering back and forth. Dory Jackson,, 6 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of bickering


1573, in the meaning defined above


1811, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of bickering was in 1573

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Last Updated

4 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Bickering.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 May. 2022.

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