- a fight in which more than two combatants are engaged.
- a heated argument: After a while the discussion turned into a battle royal.
Origin of battle royal
First recorded in 1665–75
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for battle royal
Then there would have been a battle-royal that had set the earth quaking.Plays--First Series
So this battle-royal in art commenced and raged with virulence.Great Musical Composers
George T. Ferris
This record on one occasion depicted a battle-royal at breakfast, "over the marmalade," Sally said.Somehow Good
William de Morgan
The British Lion, or any other lion, cannot always have a worthy enemy to combat, or a battle-royal to deliver.
What passed during that interview in which the battle-royal between her and her niece occurred, she never revealed.
- a fight, esp with fists or cudgels, involving more than two combatants; melee
- a long violent argument
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012