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[bat-l] /ˈbæt l/
a hostile encounter or engagement between opposing military forces:
the battle of Waterloo.
participation in such hostile encounters or engagements:
wounds received in battle.
a fight between two persons or animals:
ordering a trial by battle to settle the dispute.
any conflict or struggle:
a battle for control of the Senate.
Archaic. a battalion.
verb (used without object), battled, battling.
to engage in battle:
ready to battle with the enemy.
to work very hard or struggle; strive:
to battle for freedom.
verb (used with object), battled, battling.
to fight (a person, army, cause, etc.):
We battled strong winds and heavy rains in our small boat.
to force or accomplish by fighting, struggling, etc.:
He battled his way to the top of his profession.
give / do battle, to enter into conflict; fight:
He was ready to do battle for his beliefs.
Origin of battle1
1250-1300; Middle English bataile < Old French < Vulgar Latin *battālia for Late Latin battuālia (neuter plural) gladiatorial exercises, equivalent to battu(ere) to strike (see bate2) + -ālia, neuter plural of -ālis -al2
Related forms
battler, noun
1. contest, conflict, war. 2. warfare, combat, fighting. 10. conflict. 7. contest.
Synonym Study
1.Battle, action, skirmish mean a conflict between organized armed forces. A battle is a prolonged and general conflict pursued to a definite decision: the Battle of the Bulge in World War II. A skirmish is a slight engagement, often on the periphery of an area of battle: several minor skirmishes. An action can be a battle or a skirmish or can refer to actual fighting or combat: a major military action; action along the border; He saw action in the campaign. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for battler
Historical Examples
  • He heard the battler's seconds shout to their man to "tear into" him.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
  • The battler feinted, swaying his body from side to side, and came at him.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
  • He felt the battler's strength in that clinch and he realized it was more than his.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
  • His body reeled as the battler pounded him, his head, his face, his back.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
  • He shot up his right and it pounded into the battler's ribs.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
  • They carried him to his corner, the battler on one side, the referee on the other.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
  • I, despite my birth and lineage, am a battler for the truth.

    The Arena Various
  • The fellow with the canker at his heart is not the battler but the envious shirker who is too "proud" to risk a fall.

    If You Don't Write Fiction Charles Phelps Cushing
  • The battler moved his gloves in quick little circles and the noise from the crowd stopped.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
  • His fist struck only the air and the battler, his lips drawn back, his eyes blazing, crashed into him.

    Spring Street James H. Richardson
British Dictionary definitions for battler


a fight between large armed forces; military or naval engagement; combat
conflict; contention; struggle: his battle for recognition
do battle, give battle, join battle, to start fighting
when intr, often foll by against, for, or with. to fight in or as if in military combat; contend (with): she battled against cancer
to struggle in order to achieve something or arrive somewhere: he battled through the crowd
(intransitive) (Austral) to scrape a living, esp by doing odd jobs
Derived Forms
battler, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French bataile, from Late Latin battālia exercises performed by soldiers, from battuere to beat


a town in SE England, in East Sussex: site of the Battle of Hastings (1066); medieval abbey. Pop: 5190 (2001)


Kathleen. born 1948, US opera singer: a coloratura soprano, she made her professional debut in 1972 and sang with New York City's Metropolitan Opera (1977–94)
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
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Word Origin and History for battler



early 14c., "to fight," from French batailler (12c.), from bataille (see battle (n.)). Related: Battled; battling.



c.1300, from Old French bataille "battle, single combat," also "inner turmoil, harsh circumstances; army, body of soldiers," from Late Latin battualia "exercise of soldiers and gladiators in fighting and fencing," from Latin battuere "to beat, to strike" (see batter (v.)). Phrase battle royal "fight involving several combatants" is from 1670s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with battler
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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