\ ˈfīt How to pronounce fight (audio) \
fought\ ˈfȯt How to pronounce fought (audio) \; fighting

Definition of fight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to contend in battle or physical combat especially : to strive to overcome a person by blows or weapons The soldiers fought bravely.
b : to engage in boxing He will fight for the heavyweight title next month.
2 : to put forth a determined effort They were fighting to stay awake.

transitive verb

1a(1) : to contend against in or as if in battle or physical combat fought the invaders of his homeland was fighting a forest fire
(2) : to box against in the ring fought several strong contenders
b(1) : to attempt to prevent the success or effectiveness of the company fought the takeover attempt
(2) : to oppose the passage or development of fight a bill in Congress
2a : wage, carry on fight a battle
b : to take part in (a boxing match or similar contest)
3 : to struggle to endure or surmount fight a cold is fighting cancer
4a : to gain by struggle fights his way through
b : to resolve by struggle fought out their differences in court
5a : to manage (a ship) in a battle or storm
b : to cause to struggle or contend
c : to manage in an unnecessarily rough or awkward manner
fight shy of
: to avoid facing or meeting



Definition of fight (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a hostile encounter : battle, combat
b : a boxing match
c : a verbal disagreement : argument
2 : a struggle for a goal or an objective a fight for justice
3 : strength or disposition for fighting : pugnacity still full of fight

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Examples of fight in a Sentence

Verb When he was young he was always fighting. He fought like a tiger. The U.S. and Germany fought in World Wars I and II. They vowed to fight the invaders of their homeland. The U.S. fought Germany in World Wars I and II. He and his wife are always fighting over money. We were fighting to protect our jobs. Noun A fight broke out in the bar. When he was young he was always getting into fights. He got into another fight with his wife about money. a fight for the heavyweight title
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Meanwhile Uber and Postmates have headed to court to fight the new legislation. Charisse Jones, USA TODAY, "Could new laws designed to protect gig workers actually hurt them?," 9 Jan. 2020 The Blazers overcame a terrible first quarter to fight back and earn their biggest win of the season Tuesday, beating the Toronto Raptors 101-99 on the road. oregonlive, "Portland Trail Blazers vs. Minnesota Timberwolves: Live updates, TV channel, how to watch live stream online," 9 Jan. 2020 The best reason is to fight ISIS, which lost its caliphate but remains an insurgency, especially in the Iraqi countryside. Karim Sadjadpour, Time, "Why the U.S. Assassination of Soleimani is a Windfall for Iran's Mullahs," 9 Jan. 2020 The school was protected by state law, but Leach is still trying to fight that case. Ralph D. Russo, Houston Chronicle, "Mississippi State hires Mike Leach away from Washington St," 9 Jan. 2020 This will not make much difference in an otherwise healthy person who just needs a little help to fight off an infection, Balaban says. Karen Weintraub, Scientific American, "Combining Multiple Antibiotics May Make Bacteria More Likely to Develop Resistance," 9 Jan. 2020 The Australian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council requested the firefighters as part of a reciprocal deal that sent 138 Australians to fight U.S. wildfires in 2018. Fox News, "Effects from Australian bushfires felt all over as smoke lingers over South America," 9 Jan. 2020 But his apparent willingness now to cooperate with the Senate would most likely undermine efforts to fight a subpoena issued by the House. NBC News, "Impeachment witness John Bolton says he'll testify. House Democrats should call his bluff.," 9 Jan. 2020 Donna Rotunno, the defense attorney behind Harvey Weinstein’s best-that-money-can-buy defense team, is here to fight for his innocence. Elly Belle,, "Donna Rotunno Is The Woman Behind Harvey Weinstein’s Defence Team," 8 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Both Waithe's introduction and Matsoukas' acceptance championed the NBR for acknowledging the work of black creators and their daily fight to get films like their own, Queen & Slim, made. Abbey White, The Hollywood Reporter, "Brad Pitt, Renee Zellweger Thank Famous Friends at National Board of Review Awards," 9 Jan. 2020 Over the next few years there was a divorce, a bitter fight over custody of their daughter, Manon, which Alma won—and, though of little interest to Alma, the birth of the Bauhaus. Cathleen Schine, The New York Review of Books, "It Had to Be Her," 7 Jan. 2020 With tiny mouths, large eyes, and long, muscular bodies, whitefish — and their close cousins, cicsoes or tulibees —feed actively beneath the ice and are prized for their fight as well as their quality on the table, especially when smoked. Dr. Jason Halfen, Outdoor Life, "5 Fish You Might Not Have Caught Through The Ice But Should," 2 Jan. 2020 For its part, Facebook has also stepped up its fight against misinformation campaigns on the continent and removed a network of Israeli and Russian accounts targeting African politics this year. Yomi Kazeem, Quartz Africa, "The biggest trends in African tech and startups in 2019," 30 Dec. 2019 Access Now and others have argued that industry could be playing a much wider role in this fight, contributing both financial and reputational weight. James Griffiths, CNN, "Internet shutdowns used to be rare. They're increasingly becoming the norm in much of the world," 21 Dec. 2019 On the one hand, this fight probably shouldn’t exist. Lauren Morgan,, "Ranking the best lightsaber battles in Star Wars, from A New Hope to The Last Jedi," 19 Dec. 2019 Now, the Supreme Court must decide who is right, the US or the private entities, who have some powerful allies in this fight. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Insurers take Obamacare fight to SCOTUS, demanding $12 billion from the US," 7 Dec. 2019 This game tonight could be the type of laughable mess that will have everyone who doesn’t have a dog in this fight giggling in their living rooms for many different reasons. Andy Nesbitt, For The Win, "Tonight's Cowboys-Bears TNF game could be one beautiful mess," 5 Dec. 2019

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for fight

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Old English feohtan; akin to Old High German fehtan to fight and perhaps to Latin pectere to comb — more at pectinate

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Time Traveler for fight

Time Traveler

The first known use of fight was before the 12th century

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Statistics for fight

Last Updated

12 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Fight.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 24 January 2020.

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More Definitions for fight


How to pronounce fight (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of fight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to use weapons or physical force to try to hurt someone, to defeat an enemy, etc. : to struggle in battle or physical combat
: to be involved in (a battle, struggle, etc.)
: to argue in an angry way



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

: a violent physical struggle between opponents
: an argument or quarrel
: a boxing match


\ ˈfīt How to pronounce fight (audio) \
fought\ ˈfȯt \; fighting

Kids Definition of fight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to struggle in battle or in physical combat
2 : to argue angrily : quarrel
3 : to try hard She fought to stay awake.
4 : to struggle against fight discrimination

Other Words from fight

fighter noun



Kids Definition of fight (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a meeting in battle or in physical combat
3 : strength or desire for fighting After being wrongly blamed, I was full of fight.

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More from Merriam-Webster on fight

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fight

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fight

Spanish Central: Translation of fight

Nglish: Translation of fight for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fight for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fight

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


a feeling of well-being or elation

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