martial art


Definition of martial art 

: any of several arts of combat and self-defense (such as karate and judo) that are widely practiced as sport

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Other words from martial art

martial artist noun

Examples of martial art in a Sentence

He was trained in the martial arts.

Recent Examples on the Web

And in terms of activities, Juan, liberals do yoga and martial arts, whereas conservatives, archery and woodworking. Fox News, "GOP delays House vote on 'compromise' immigration bill," 22 June 2018 Denise Cason describes the night her boyfriend, Donshay White, died following a mixed-martial arts bout. Drew Hill, The Courier-Journal, "At least 6 MMA fighters have died while in the ring or shortly after," 21 June 2018 The 12-man unit, each dressed in a black suit and blue and white striped tie, was selected for skills including marksmanship and martial arts as well as physical fitness and even their looks, Agence France-Presse reported. Eli Meixler, Time, "Kim Jong Un's Jogging Bodyguard Unit Make Another Appearance in Singapore," 10 June 2018 Entertainment by area music, dance, martial arts and yoga groups and food offerings are also part of the event. Courant Community, "Community News For The Colchester Edition," 5 June 2018 Netflix put out a first real look at season 2 of Luke Cage today, teasing a new villain who’s able to lay a finger on the show’s hero by relying on martial arts instead of guns. Jacob Kastrenakes, The Verge, "New trailers: The Predator, Luke Cage, 13 Reasons Why, and more," 12 May 2018 The focus shifted to Notorious One, in tribute to Irish mixed-martial arts champion Conor McGregor because Ruis’ mother was 100 percent Irish. Charles Curtis, For The Win, "Bolt d'Oro, named for Usain Bolt, was almost named after Conor McGregor," 4 May 2018 The film took full advantage of the fact that Snipes was one of the great action stars of the 1990s, combining a devilish grin with mediocre martial arts and great comic timing. Sonny Bunch, ajc, "As we prepare to celebrate ‘Black Panther,’ let’s not forget ‘Blade’," 1 Feb. 2018 Friday’s performers included student musicians from Melody Mart USA music store, cheerleaders from Homewood-Flossmoor High School, martial arts students from ATA Karate for Kids and dance students from the American Dance Center. Ted Slowik, Daily Southtown, "Slowik: Homewood takes spotlight on 'WGN Morning News' live block party broadcast," 13 July 2018

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

1920, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for martial art

Last Updated

9 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for martial art

The first known use of martial art was in 1920

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More Definitions for martial art

martial art


English Language Learners Definition of martial art

: any one of several forms of fighting and self-defense (such as karate and judo) that are widely practiced as sports

martial art


Kids Definition of martial art

: any of several forms of combat and self-defense (as karate or judo) that are widely practiced as sports

More from Merriam-Webster on martial art

See words that rhyme with martial art Encyclopedia article about martial art

Comments on martial art

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the setting in which something occurs

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