gun·​fight ˈgən-ˌfīt How to pronounce gunfight (audio)
: a hostile encounter in which antagonists with guns shoot at each other
gunfighter noun

Example Sentences

There was a gunfight between the rival gangs.
Recent Examples on the Web That gunfight led the officers to shoot, Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer said after the two were charged in 2021. Zenebou Sylla, CNN, 5 May 2023 Months of tension between Sudan’s ruling generals exploded into gunfights between rival units that quickly spread to the city center, concentrated around the military headquarters and the international airport. Declan Walsh, New York Times, 5 May 2023 American audiences may not fully understand what the characters are talking about, but the gunfights and sword fights? Noel Murray, Los Angeles Times, 19 Apr. 2023 The fighting erupted over the weekend between two rival groups led by two military leaders vying for power, leaving millions caught in the crossfire as airstrikes, shelling and gunfights hit the capital, Khartoum, and other areas. Patrick Smith, NBC News, 18 Apr. 2023 Without over-relying on the visual cliché of handheld agitation, the camerawork is nimble and exciting in both the central gunfight and the climactic clash at a dam designated as the safest extraction point. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 18 Apr. 2023 Lamont Gratton, who had worked at the 5904 First Avenue North store for six years, said the drive-through menu was hit with gunfire earlier this year after a nearby gunfight broke out and a bullet was found lodged in the menu board. Greg Garrison | , al, 5 Apr. 2023 An ex-marine, Owens finds himself in a gunfight with a black-market firearms dealer named Slade, who smashes Owens’ vidder. Jeff Calder, ajc, 3 Apr. 2023 According to Netflix, this was the biggest gunfight standoff to occur on American soil since the Civil War. Jasmine Washington, Seventeen, 22 Mar. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'gunfight.' 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

1659, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of gunfight was in 1659

Dictionary Entries Near gunfight

Cite this Entry

“Gunfight.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


gun·​fight -ˌfīt How to pronounce gunfight (audio)
: a fight fought with guns
gunfighter noun

More from Merriam-Webster on gunfight

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