pu·​gi·​list ˈpyü-jə-list How to pronounce pugilist (audio)
: fighter
especially : a professional boxer

Examples of pugilist in a Sentence

a pugilist with the trademark of the boxing ring: a nose that showed signs of having been broken on more than one occasion
Recent Examples on the Web The state’s sole House seat was captured by Mary Peltola, a relatively moderate mainstream Democrat, who thwarted a comeback bid by the far-right pugilist Sarah Palin. Mark Z. Barabak, Los Angeles Times, 2 July 2023 Jake Paul, pugilist, notorious internet personality and digital entrepreneur, is making his first foray into feature film. Brent Lang, Variety, 6 June 2023 In a post-truth world, pugilists and zealots dismiss such scholarly arguments as apologia for Muslim violence or as a weak case for pluralism that divests Hindus of their rights as the majority. Supriya Gandhi, Foreign Affairs, 13 July 2020 Most obvious are the pugilists: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who regularly call out Trump's character flaws, ideological inconsistencies and electoral losses. Phillip M. Bailey, USA TODAY, 8 June 2023 Jake Paul, the social media personality and Disney Channel star turned professional boxer, is set to make his feature film debut in a combat sports drama backed by Mandalay Pictures and Wonder Street Paul will star as a small-town youth rising to international fame as a pugilist. Etan Vlessing, The Hollywood Reporter, 6 June 2023 Armed with a thick Boston accent and a direct and brusque nature, Baker is a former union shop steward known as a rhetorical pugilist. Danny McDonald, BostonGlobe.com, 20 Apr. 2023 When covid-19 shut down touring in 2020, Ian Shelton — drummer and vocalist for sonic pugilists Regional Justice Center — had to regroup. Chris Kelly, Washington Post, 15 Mar. 2023 Bruno was a pugilist and an ideologue. Corey S. Powell, Discover Magazine, 10 Mar. 2014 See More

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

circa 1740, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pugilist was circa 1740

Dictionary Entries Near pugilist

Cite this Entry

“Pugilist.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pugilist. Accessed 30 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


pu·​gi·​list ˈpyü-jə-ləst How to pronounce pugilist (audio)
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