conflict

noun
con·​flict | \ ˈkän-ˌflikt How to pronounce conflict (audio) \

Definition of conflict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : fight, battle, war an armed conflict
2a : competitive or opposing action of incompatibles : antagonistic state or action (as of divergent ideas, interests, or persons) a conflict of principles
b : mental struggle resulting from incompatible or opposing needs, drives, wishes, or external or internal demands His conscience was in conflict with his duty.
3 : the opposition of persons or forces that gives rise to the dramatic action in a drama or fiction The conflict in the play is between the king and the archbishop.

conflict

verb
con·​flict | \ kən-ˈflikt How to pronounce conflict (audio) , ˈkän-ˌflikt \
conflicted; conflicting; conflicts

Definition of conflict (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to be different, opposed, or contradictory : to fail to be in agreement or accord His statement conflicts with the facts.
2 archaic : to contend in warfare

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Other Words from conflict

Noun

conflictful \ ˈkän-​ˌflikt-​fəl How to pronounce conflict (audio) \ adjective
conflictual \ kän-​ˈflik-​chə-​wəl How to pronounce conflict (audio) , kən-​ , -​chəl , -​shwəl , -​chü-​əl \ adjective

Verb

confliction \ kən-​ˈflik-​shən How to pronounce conflict (audio) , kän-​ \ noun
conflictive \ kən-​ˈflik-​tiv How to pronounce conflict (audio) , ˈkän-​ˌflik-​ \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for conflict

Noun

discord, strife, conflict, contention, dissension, variance mean a state or condition marked by a lack of agreement or harmony. discord implies an intrinsic or essential lack of harmony producing quarreling, factiousness, or antagonism. a political party long racked by discord strife emphasizes a struggle for superiority rather than the incongruity or incompatibility of the persons or things involved. during his brief reign the empire was never free of civil strife conflict usually stresses the action of forces in opposition but in static applications implies an irreconcilability as of duties or desires. the conflict of freedom and responsibility contention applies to strife or competition that shows itself in quarreling, disputing, or controversy. several points of contention about the new zoning law dissension implies strife or discord and stresses a division into factions. religious dissension threatened to split the colony variance implies a clash between persons or things owing to a difference in nature, opinion, or interest. cultural variances that work against a national identity

Examples of conflict in a Sentence

Noun In great wars—the American Civil War, the First and Second World Wars—the largest casualties are suffered just before the conflicts end. — Steve Forbes, Forbes, 19 Oct. 2009 At a moment when the country was still in the throes of the conflict over Vietnam, it was refreshing to see the best of America. — Al Gore, An Inconvenient Truth, 2006 … for work-family conflicts to disappear, two rock-ribbed institutions must change: the whole concept of children's care, and the way the workplace works. — Letty Cottin Pogrebin, Family Politics, 1983 The basic conflict in the novel is, of course, between the life on the river, where Huck finds innocence, brotherhood with man, and communion with nature, and life ashore, where, stage by stage, he discovers the corruption of society … — Robert Penn Warren, Democracy and Poetry, (1975) 1976 a conflict between two gangs recent violent conflict in the region Everyone in my family always tries to avoid conflict. There was inevitable conflict over what to name the group. They're having serious conflicts over the budget. I don't see any conflicts between the theories. You'll need to resolve the conflict between your parents' plans for you and your own ambitions. Verb Mr. van Wolferen says the U.S. must do more: It has to openly explain to Japan that it wants a managed-trade deal in order to end the bickering between the two nations, a move that would conflict with America's free-trade rhetoric. — David P. Hamilton, Wall Street Journal, 8 June 1995 Lily smiled faintly at the injunction to take her tea strong. It was the temptation she was always struggling to resist. Her craving for the keen stimulant was forever conflicting with that other craving for sleep … — Edith Wharton, The House of Mirth, 1905 The expectations about motherhood as full-time job that this situation created conflicted with the philosophy of the women's movement of the l960's. — Anita Shreve, New York Times Magazine, 2l Nov. l982 Reports conflicted on how many people were involved. his statement conflicts with the facts, as given in the police report
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Congo has suffered more than a quarter-century of conflict and distrust of government health workers and other outsiders is high in eastern Congo. Time, "Congo Is Working to Stop a New Ebola Outbreak While Facing a Resurgence of COVID-19," 8 Feb. 2021 That means extreme weather displaces nearly three times more people than conflict and nearly nine times more than fear of persecution, according to the CSIS analysis. Adam Aton, Scientific American, "Biden Pushes U.S.—and the World—to Help Climate Migrants," 8 Feb. 2021 Neither do many projects attempting to push conversation around challenging social topics, from conflict and sexuality to poverty. Shola Lawal, The Christian Science Monitor, "Why few Nigerians have seen their country’s Oscar submission," 5 Feb. 2021 During his work in Afghanistan helping non-governmental organizations operate in conflict zones, Meijer purposely stopped using his prominent last name to avoid having a bigger target for a bounty kidnapping. Marisa Schultz, Fox News, "Rep. Peter Meijer, Iraq veteran, says US needs to plan for future: 'I'm very worried about long-term trends'," 10 Jan. 2021 Her experience shooting documentaries, often in conflict zones amid unstable conditions, taught Kirsten how to improvise and make the most of unexpected situations. Steve Dollar, Los Angeles Times, "‘Dick Johnson Is Dead’: Filmmaker’s wildly inventive take on her father’s dementia," 4 Jan. 2021 In January, Department of Defense contractor Ghost Robotics will be unleashing four of its semi-autonomous robots at Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida in what could be a step toward introducing robot dogs to conflict zones. Washington Post, "The U.S. Air Force is entering a robotic future," 7 Dec. 2020 The Trump administration’s push to reduce U.S. forces in Africa has drawn opposition from lawmakers from both parties who see a need for a continued American engagement in the continent’s conflict zones. Nancy A. Youssef And Michael M. Phillips, WSJ, "U.S. Will Move Nearly All Troops Out of Somalia, Officials Say," 4 Dec. 2020 Companies would also need to monitor all minerals and metals in conflict zones and audit its suppliers for child labor. Vivienne Walt, Fortune, "In a historic vote, the Swiss will determine if multinationals should be held liable for global abuses," 27 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Because hearings are limited to those who sign up, videostreams don’t conflict with the prohibition against broadcasting. Victoria Bekiempis, Wired, "How Covid Gums Up the Court System," 15 Feb. 2021 Instead, gun safe manufacturers contract with independent labs, and as a result, their claims often conflict. Phil Bourjaily, Field & Stream, "The Complete Guide to Buying a Gun Safe," 25 Jan. 2021 Student athletes would not be allowed to enter into a deal that could conflict with existing university contracts, though. Dave Boucher, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan Senate passes bills to allow college athletes to earn money through endorsements," 16 Dec. 2020 They are also barred from engaging in outside employment that could conflict with their official duties. Brian Maffly, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Federal land manager pulls plug on Utah tar sand lease because of conflict of interest," 14 Dec. 2020 Meanwhile, some additional plans conflict with other city regulations — an addition to the back of the building would complicate access to a sewer line, city officials say. Katy Read, Star Tribune, "Preservation rules hinder couple's plans to renovate old Excelsior property," 22 Jan. 2021 After Memorial Day, the heat could be a prohibiting factor, and once fall arrives, football season and planning for Carnival 2022 are likely to conflict with possible parades, Excalibur Captain Missy Heldreth said Monday. Faimon Roberts, NOLA.com, "Jefferson Parish drops May Mardi Gras plan, leaves door open for parades if coronavirus subsides," 13 Jan. 2021 The law bans students from signing contracts that would conflict with current university deals. Dave Boucher, Detroit Free Press, "Gov. Whitmer signs bills allowing college athletes to earn money through sponsorships, ads," 30 Dec. 2020 Similarly, the employer may ask an employee to provide an explanation of his/her sincerely held religious beliefs and how these beliefs conflict with a vaccination requirement. Anchorage Daily News, "Can employers require their employees get a COVID-19 vaccination?," 22 Dec. 2020

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for conflict

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Latin conflictus act of striking together, from confligere to strike together, from com- + fligere to strike — more at profligate

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Time Traveler for conflict

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for conflict

Last Updated

22 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Conflict.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/conflict. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for conflict

conflict

noun

English Language Learners Definition of conflict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a struggle for power, property, etc.
: strong disagreement between people, groups, etc., that results in often angry argument
: a difference that prevents agreement : disagreement between ideas, feelings, etc.

conflict

verb

English Language Learners Definition of conflict (Entry 2 of 2)

: to be different in a way that prevents agreement : to say or express opposite things
: to happen at the same time as something else

conflict

noun
con·​flict | \ ˈkän-ˌflikt How to pronounce conflict (audio) \

Kids Definition of conflict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an extended struggle : battle
2 : a clashing disagreement (as between ideas or interests)

conflict

verb
con·​flict | \ kən-ˈflikt How to pronounce conflict (audio) \
conflicted; conflicting

Kids Definition of conflict (Entry 2 of 2)

: to be in opposition Their goals conflict. The meeting conflicts with my appointment.

conflict

noun
con·​flict | \ ˈkän-ˌflikt How to pronounce conflict (audio) \

Medical Definition of conflict

: mental struggle resulting from incompatible or opposing needs, drives, wishes, or external or internal demands

Other Words from conflict

conflictful \ ˈkän-​ˌflikt-​fəl How to pronounce conflict (audio) \ adjective
conflictless \ ˈkän-​ˌflik-​tləs How to pronounce conflict (audio) \ adjective
conflictual \ kän-​ˈflik-​ch(ə-​w)əl, kən-​ How to pronounce conflict (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on conflict

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