com·pe·ti·tion | \ˌkäm-pə-ˈti-shən \

Definition of competition 

1 : the act or process of competing : rivalry: such as

a : the effort of two or more parties acting independently to secure the business of a third party by offering the most favorable terms contractors in competition for the contract to build the new school

b : active demand by two or more organisms or kinds of organisms for some environmental resource in short supply the interspecies competition for food

2 : a contest between rivals a gymnastics competition also : one's competitors faced tough competition

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Synonyms & Antonyms for competition


challenger, competitor, contender, contestant, corrival, rival



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Examples of competition in a Sentence

Prices are lower when there is competition among the stores. Don't let the competition know our trade secrets. They had a competition to see who could sell the most lemonade.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Like the slow drip of a leaky faucet, the quality of competition continues to worsen every year. Pat Disabato, Daily Southtown, "Disabato: As travel schedules continue to expand, high school baseball teams feeling the summer squeeze," 13 July 2018 There's lots of competition for attention, but so many vendors make no effort to differentiate themselves. Rob Weinberg, Pomerado News, "Must trade shows be boring?," 12 July 2018 The catch and the danger is that there is a lot of competition on sites like these. Steve Strauss, USA TODAY, "Get your gig: Here are the 9 best sites to visit for freelance or contract work," 12 July 2018 Sitting in the smaller Cox Pavilion on the first day of competition, Quinn Jackson took in a game between the Brooklyn Nets and Orlando Magic. Kirk A. Bado, azcentral, "NBA Summer League bets on importance of engaging off the court," 11 July 2018 The emcee was referencing the removal of the swimsuit competition, according to The Boston Globe. Ryan Gaydos, Fox News, "Massachusetts beauty queen steps down from pageant after #MeToo joke," 10 July 2018 For more than 20 years, Francis has overseen almost every aspect of the HCYP, which includes three levels of competition for girls ages 6 through 18 and has built the largest recreational softball program in central Maryland. Kyle Stackpole, Howard County Times, "Howard County announces 2018 Community Sports Hall of Fame induction class," 7 July 2018 However, Biyombo would get plenty of competition for minutes at center with the Hornets. Rick Bonnell, charlotteobserver, "Reports: Trade could send Bismack Biyombo back to the Charlotte Hornets," 7 July 2018 But Hezonja’s lack of production during his first two seasons, his subpar preseason and a glut of competition on the wings and the power forward spot prompted team officials to decline the option. Josh Robbins,, "Magic Mailbag: Will Orlando bring back Mario Hezonja?," 30 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'competition.' 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 competition

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for competition

Late Latin competition-, competitio, from Latin competere — see compete

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Phrases Related to competition

in competition with

the competition

Statistics for competition

Last Updated

12 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for competition

The first known use of competition was in 1579

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More Definitions for competition



English Language Learners Definition of competition

: the act or process of trying to get or win something (such as a prize or a higher level of success) that someone else is also trying to get or win : the act or process of competing

: actions that are done by people, companies, etc., that are competing against each other

the competition : a person or group that you are trying to succeed against : a person or group that you are competing with


com·pe·ti·tion | \ˌkäm-pə-ˈti-shən \

Kids Definition of competition

1 : the act or process of trying to get or win something others are also trying to get or win

2 : a contest in which all who take part strive for the same thing

3 : all of a person's competitors He beat the competition.

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Comments on competition

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


evasion of direct action or statement

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