- inclined to quarrel or fight readily; quarrelsome; belligerent; combative.
Origin of pugnacious
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for pugnacity
“I Am Every Woman,” it said, and Tehelka was widely lauded for its pugnacity.The Fall of India’s Conscience
November 25, 2013
Her expression lost its pugnacity and became sincerely concerned.'Twixt Land & Sea
We must defend ourselves, so the instinct of pugnacity is born.The Mind and Its Education
George Herbert Betts
The 'Mercury' missed his power of organisation, his splendid gift of pugnacity.Grey Town
The struggling crowd had lashed his pugnacity and ensanguined his temper.The Californians
Gertrude Franklin Horn Atherton
Celtic, he thought, from her pugnacity, and her taste in fillets and djibbahs.The Forsyte Saga, Volume III.
- readily disposed to fight; belligerent
Word Origin and History for pugnacity
c.1600, from Latin pugnacitas "fondness for fighting," from pugnax (genitive pugnacis) "combative" (see pugnacious).
1640s, a back-formation from pugnacity or else from Latin pugnacis, genitive of pugnax "combative, fond of fighting," from pugnare "to fight," especially with the fists, "contend against," from pugnus "a fist," from PIE *pung-, nasalized form of root *peuk-, *peug- "to stick, stab, to prick" (cf. Greek pyx "with clenched fist," pygme "fist, boxing," pyktes "boxer;" Latin pungere "to pierce, prick").