dispute

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

Definition of dispute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

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

transitive verb

1a : 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.
2a : to struggle against : oppose disputed the advance of the invaders
b : to contend over disputing ownership of the land

dispute

noun
dis·​pute | \ di-ˈspyüt How to pronounce dispute (audio) , ˈdi-ˌspyüt How to pronounce dispute (audio) \

Definition of dispute (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : 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

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from dispute

Verb

disputable \ di-​ˈspyü-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce disputable (audio) , ˈdi-​spyə-​ \ adjective
disputably \ di-​ˈspyü-​tə-​blē How to pronounce disputably (audio) , ˈdi-​spyə-​ \ adverb
disputer noun

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.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

An attorney retained by Crump disputed that he was interviewed. Alison Dirr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Fire and Police Commission manager resigns abruptly, implores leaders to help staff ahead of DNC," 6 Sep. 2019 Nursing home officials dispute the state’s calculations regarding the empty beds, and legislators who represent the districts where the homes are located have asked for the issue to be reconsidered. Russell Blair, courant.com, "Capitol Week in Review: Hartford, New Haven and Bridgeport mayors face primary challenges Tuesday," 6 Sep. 2019 He and the other protestors disputed Postmates’ assertion that San Francisco couriers average $21.50 an hour. Carolyn Said, SFChronicle.com, "Gig workers deliver peanuts to DoorDash, Instacart and Postmates as symbol of their pay," 5 Sep. 2019 Only FC Dallas partisans would dispute the Red Bulls’ position as American soccer’s premier talent identifier and incubator. Brian Straus, SI.com, "Aaron's Long Road: USMNT, Red Bulls Center Back's Unlikely Journey," 4 Sep. 2019 But now, as the President’s online pronouncements and stream of daily commentary have almost subsumed regular policymaking, few dispute the significance of having an around the clock, unfiltered Presidential feed. Susan B. Glasser, The New Yorker, "Trump’s Wacky, Angry, and Extreme August," 3 Sep. 2019 Kirstin Alvanitakis, a spokeswoman for the Dems, disputes Sheehan’s characterization of the party sitting on the sidelines. Laura Hancock, cleveland.com, "Ohio Dems sue Frank LaRose seeking to stop voter purge," 30 Aug. 2019 Still, no one disputes that wide-body planes feel less claustrophobic. Barbara Peterson, Condé Nast Traveler, "Airbus Wants to Change the Way We Fly Long Haul," 28 Aug. 2019 Officers disputed the narrative, citing a 16-page police report that contends the couple took other items from the store, including underwear. Bree Burkitt, azcentral, "Phoenix police must now self-report whenever they point a gun at someone," 19 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Now, Mountains & Mermaids finds itself in a dispute with Starbucks, which wants the trademark office to reject the application. Annie Zak, Anchorage Daily News, "Small Alaska apparel company and Starbucks clash in trademark dispute," 9 Sep. 2019 Bell sat out the 2018 season during a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers. oregonlive, "New York Jets vs Buffalo Bills: Live score updates, TV channel, how to watch free live stream online," 8 Sep. 2019 Last year, Polaris settled a dispute with federal regulators in which it was accused of not immediately reporting a possible defect in more than 200,000 side-by-sides sold over four years. David Jeans, New York Times, "The Polaris RZR, an Off-Road Thrill That Can Go Up in Flames," 6 Sep. 2019 Apple has been slow to develop 5G, in part because of a dispute with Qualcomm, which makes the most advanced 5G modems, over licensing fees. Washington Post, "Why Apple’s newest iPhones might not generate the buzz of years past," 6 Sep. 2019 Brown did not play in the preseason and missed much of training camp due to frostbite on his feet, the result of a cryotherapy mishap, and a dispute with the NFL over his helmet. Matt Kawahara, SFChronicle.com, "Agent: Raiders-Antonio Brown relationship can still be salvaged," 5 Sep. 2019 In April, the NRA’s then-President Oliver North was ousted following a dispute with LaPierre. Cnn.com Wire Service, The Mercury News, "NRA rips San Francisco Board of Supervisors after being labeled a ‘domestic terrorist organization," 5 Sep. 2019 But about an hour before the meeting, Republican Rep. John Nygren of Marinette canceled the meeting because of the dispute with Kaul. Patrick Marley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "As confusion over lame-duck laws continues, Republicans cancel meeting on legal settlements," 4 Sep. 2019 The National Republican Congressional Committee, House Republicans' campaign arm, started selling T-shirts showing Greenland as a part of the U.S. to raise money following President Donald Trump's dispute with Denmark over a sale of Greenland. Nicholas Wu, USA TODAY, "Beto O'Rourke campaign selling 'this is f---ed up' T-shirts to help gun control activists," 1 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dispute.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of dispute

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun

1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for dispute

Verb and Noun

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about dispute

Statistics for dispute

Last Updated

11 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dispute

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for dispute

dispute

verb

English Language Learners Definition of dispute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to say or show that (something) may not be true, correct, or legal
: to argue about (something)
formal : to fight in order to take control of (something)

dispute

noun

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

: a disagreement or argument

dispute

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

Kids Definition of dispute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to question or deny the truth or rightness of No one ever disputed the story.
2 : argue sense 1 The boys disputed over who won the race.
3 : to fight over The two nations disputed the territory.

dispute

noun

Kids Definition of dispute (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : debate entry 1 sense 3 It is a fact beyond dispute.

dispute

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

Legal Definition of dispute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

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

Other Words from dispute

disputable \ di-​ˈspyü-​tə-​bəl, ˈdis-​pyə-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce disputable (audio) \ adjective

dispute

noun

Legal Definition of dispute (Entry 2 of 2)

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

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on dispute

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dispute

Spanish Central: Translation of dispute

Nglish: Translation of dispute for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dispute for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dispute

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

WORD OF THE DAY

concealment of treason or felony

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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