con·​tro·​vert ˈkän-trə-ˌvərt How to pronounce controvert (audio)
controverted; controverting; controverts

transitive verb

: to dispute or oppose by reasoning
controvert a point in a discussion
ˈkän-trə-ˌvər-tər How to pronounce controvert (audio)
ˈkän-trə-ˌvər-tə-bəl How to pronounce controvert (audio)

Examples of controvert in a Sentence

The attorney offered evidence that controverted the plaintiff's allegations. ever since the poem was first published, critics and scholars have controverted over the meaning of its concluding lines
Recent Examples on the Web The appellate court noted that the woman’s testimony was controverted. Virginia Hammerle, Dallas News, 16 May 2023 During the upcoming weeks and through the appeal a slew of additional credible and controverting evidence will come to light. Ben Shpigel, New York Times, 11 Aug. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'controvert.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



First Known Use

1563, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of controvert was in 1563

Dictionary Entries Near controvert

Cite this Entry

“Controvert.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Feb. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on controvert

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!