\ 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


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.


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

For now, he’s left fighting to keep his league afloat – and hoping the players show up. Alex Putterman,, "Connecticut Little Leagues forced to adjust amid youth baseball participation decline," 10 July 2019 Conflict punctuates the record, as combatants fought over mining regions. The Economist, "Arctic lead levels shed new light on Europe’s history," 10 July 2019 The dinosaurs appear to have been fighting on a sandbar in the middle of a river. Jeremy P. Jacobs, Science | AAAS, "Are dinosaur fossils ‘minerals’? The Montana Supreme Court will decide high stakes case," 10 July 2019 As the Legislature’s fight over where to meet pushes into another day, the list of individuals and groups calling on lawmakers to throw out Dunleavy’s budget vetoes grows. James Brooks, Anchorage Daily News, "In Juneau, lawmakers still lack votes for budget veto override as Wasilla group vows to stay ’22 strong'," 10 July 2019 Five years ago, Terino and other Federal Hill business owners fought against another bar across the street where a man was beaten to death; it was shut down. Amanda Milkovits,, "Police want to shut down Federal Hill bar after nearby killing," 10 July 2019 Congress for decades has granted California authority to set its own, tougher mileage standards as a way of fighting the state’s chronic smog. Ellen Knickmeyer, The Denver Post, "Gov. Polis, 22 other governors join California in opposing Trump mileage standards," 9 July 2019 The two models start fighting when Smalls shows up wearing the same gold dress as Hadid. Claudia Harmata,, "Catfight! Irina Shayk, Gigi Hadid and Joan Smalls Do Some Hair Pulling in New Moschino Campaign," 9 July 2019 The film follows this year’s release of Mortal Kombat 11, the latest (and highly praised) fighting videogame, wherein Sub-Zero gets updated abilities, like his ice axe and ice slide moves. Nick Romano,, "Mortal Kombat movie with James Wan finds its Sub-Zero," 9 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In May, that fight appeared to have finally reached its end, with a judicial ruling that allowed doctors to take Lambert off life support. Antoine Crouin, Barbara Wojazer And Kara Fox, CNN, "Frenchman Vincent Lambert dies after years-long life support battle," 11 July 2019 About 10 miles away, Lewis Kelley wages a similar fight on different turf. Alex Putterman,, "Connecticut Little Leagues forced to adjust amid youth baseball participation decline," 10 July 2019 Before taking out his anger on Castle Byers (RIP to that amazing backyard fort), Will and Mike had a big fight and said some pretty harsh things. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Is Will Byers Gay in "Stranger Things" Season 3?," 10 July 2019 In 2004, after a local resident reported seeing a group of male players engaged in a water fight in the women’s bathroom, Speedway removed the rims and backboards from Meadowood, never to be returned. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: Home to McGinnis, Mount and the greatest pick-up basketball in Indiana," 10 July 2019 Surveillance video that the county released to after a public records fight in the Ohio Court of Claims does not show any use-of-force incident. Adam Ferrise,, "Cuyahoga County Jail guard attacked inmate, later threatened to hang him for ‘snitching’ to U.S. Marshals, unrelated lawsuit says," 10 July 2019 The Manukyans, of Glendale, California, endured a court fight before being granted custody of their son, according to the court filing., "Fertility clinic mixup entangles three couples after two unrelated embryos implanted in woman, lawsuit alleges," 10 July 2019 Fine fight Monster makeup Lady Gaga will release a cosmetic line, Haus Laboratories, to be sold on Amazon in September., "Mariott fights fine; Lady Gaga’s cosmetics line; women’s programs get grants," 10 July 2019 With President Donald Trump at the top of the ticket, Republicans and Democrats are preparing for an epic 2020 fight that will determine the balance of power in Texas -- and perhaps the country. Jamie Hancock, Dallas News, "Get ready for an epic Texas 2020 fight, plus three questions that could shape the presidential race," 9 July 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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Statistics for fight

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fight

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

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More Definitions for fight



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

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fight

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fight

Spanish Central: Translation of fight

Nglish: Translation of fight for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fight for Arabic Speakers

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