dispute

1 of 2

verb

dis·​pute di-ˈspyüt How to pronounce dispute (audio)
disputed; disputing

intransitive verb

: to engage in argument : debate
especially : to argue irritably or with irritating persistence

transitive verb

1
a
: to make the subject of verbal controversy or disputation
Legislators hotly disputed the bill.
b
: to call into question or cast doubt upon
Her honesty was never disputed.
The witness disputed the defendant's claim.
2
a
: to struggle against : oppose
disputed the advance of the invaders
b
: to contend over
disputing ownership of the land
disputable
di-ˈspyü-tə-bəl How to pronounce dispute (audio)
ˈdi-spyə-
adjective
disputably
di-ˈspyü-tə-blē How to pronounce dispute (audio)
ˈdi-spyə-
adverb
disputer noun

dispute

2 of 2

noun

1
a
: verbal controversy : debate
a dispute about what to do with the surplus
a landlord-tenant dispute
legal disputes
The matter is still in dispute.
b
: quarrel
Police were called to a domestic dispute.
2
obsolete : physical combat

Examples of dispute in a Sentence

Verb You can dispute your bill if you believe it is inaccurate. These estimates are hotly disputed by scientists. No one ever disputed that it was the right decision. The source of the text has been disputed for centuries. a part of the city where two drug gangs are disputing territory Noun They could not settle their dispute. There is a labor dispute between workers and management. The two farmers are involved in a land dispute.
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
And in interviews, several ethics experts disputed the idea that Loren Merchan’s career posed a conflict. William K. Rashbaum, New York Times, 8 Apr. 2024 Netanyahu insisted in a CNN interview last month that his country’s policy was to let as much humanitarian aid into Gaza as is necessary, a claim that’s been widely disputed. Ivana Kottasová, CNN, 6 Apr. 2024 See all Example Sentences for dispute 

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

Word History

Etymology

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French desputer, from Latin disputare to discuss, from dis- + putare to think

First Known Use

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun

1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of dispute was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near dispute

Cite this Entry

“Dispute.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dispute. Accessed 17 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

dispute

1 of 2 verb
dis·​pute dis-ˈpyüt How to pronounce dispute (audio)
disputed; disputing
1
: to engage in argument : debate
2
: to quarrel angrily : wrangle
3
: to question the truth or rightness of
dispute a statement
4
: to fight over : contest
the two nations disputed the territory
disputer noun

dispute

2 of 2 noun
1
2
: an angry difference of opinion : quarrel

Legal Definition

dispute

1 of 2 verb
dis·​pute di-ˈspyüt How to pronounce dispute (audio)
disputed; disputing

intransitive verb

: to engage in a dispute
disputing with management over contract terms

transitive verb

: to engage in a dispute over
disputing the correct application of the contract provision
especially : to oppose by argument or assertion
disputed changes to the grievance procedure

dispute

2 of 2 noun
: an assertion of opposing views or claims : a disagreement as to rights
especially : one that is the subject of proceedings for resolution (as arbitration)

More from Merriam-Webster on dispute

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