con·​fron·​ta·​tion | \ ˌkän-(ˌ)frən-ˈtā-shən How to pronounce confrontation (audio) \

Definition of confrontation

: the act of confronting : the state of being confronted: such as
a : a face-to-face meeting a confrontation between the suspect and the victim
b : the clashing of forces or ideas : conflict a violent confrontation between rival gangs
c : comparison The flashbacks bring into meaningful confrontation present and past, near and far.— R. J. Clements

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Other Words from confrontation

confrontational \ ˌkän-​(ˌ)frən-​ˈtā-​shnəl How to pronounce confrontational (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
confrontationalist \ ˌkän-​(ˌ)frən-​ˈtā-​sh(ə-​)nə-​list How to pronounce confrontationalist (audio) \ noun
confrontationist \ ˌkän-​(ˌ)frən-​ˈtā-​sh(ə-​)nist How to pronounce confrontationist (audio) \ noun or adjective

Examples of confrontation in a Sentence

There were several violent confrontations between rival gangs. He would prefer not to have a confrontation with the authorities. a series of confrontations between residents and police We want cooperation, not confrontation. We seek to avoid military confrontation at all costs.
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Recent Examples on the Web Along with lecture space, the classroom building includes a 360-degree video simulator, where law enforcement can don special vests and use laser guns to practice responses to situations from school shootings to street confrontations. Rachel Dissell, cleveland, "Tri-C’s new Simulated Scenario Village offers cutting-edge training for first responders," 16 Feb. 2020 The causes are complex and span the spectrum of societal issues: domestic violence, poverty and disinvestment, gangs and access to guns that can make a confrontation lethal. Cassandra Jaramillo, Dallas News, "The Toll: Tracking homicides in Dallas in 2020 after last year’s high murder number," 16 Feb. 2020 The Mobile sheriff’s office says a confrontation over driving ended Valentine’s Day with one person stabbed and another in jail for assault. Lee Roop |, al, "Mobile deputies charge 17-year-old girl in road rage stabbing," 15 Feb. 2020 During a similar confrontation over seating a few weeks later, Ruggles was tossed off a moving train, got badly injured, and lost his valise and money. Graham Hodges, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "David Ruggles was a friend to Frederick Douglass, the first full-time black activist and a lead conductor on the Underground Railroad," 14 Feb. 2020 The clash marked a rare confrontation involving US and Syrian troops in the crowded region where Russian forces are also deployed and was certain to escalate tensions. Andrew Wilks,, "US troops clash with progovernment group in northeast Syria," 12 Feb. 2020 The UK’s relationship with the EU is frozen for the rest of 2020, as leaders try to negotiate the final divorce by the end of the year, and bankers in London are mindful of Switzerland’s recent confrontation with the EU. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "For Wall Street banks in London, Brexit may never be truly over," 10 Feb. 2020 Ukraine counts on the United States for a range of things, most importantly in Ukraine’s confrontation with the Russians. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, "Ambassador Bill Taylor on Impeachment, Russia, and the Law of the Jungle," 8 Feb. 2020 One of the clearest-eyed is Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon, which presses ever onward, from Milkman’s prehistory to his birth, childhood, adulthood, and a climactic confrontation. Jason Kehe, Wired, "The Witcher and Little Women Share a Time-Tested Secret," 7 Feb. 2020

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

1632, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for confrontation

see confront

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Time Traveler for confrontation

Time Traveler

The first known use of confrontation was in 1632

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Statistics for confrontation

Last Updated

20 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Confrontation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for confrontation


How to pronounce confrontation (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of confrontation

: a situation in which people, groups, etc., fight, oppose, or challenge each other in an angry way

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