[ ag-uh-nis-tik ]
/ ˌæg əˈnɪs tɪk /


combative; striving to overcome in argument.
straining for effect: agonistic humor.
of or relating to ancient Greek athletic contests.
Ethology. pertaining to the range of activities associated with aggressive encounters between members of the same species, including threat, attack, appeasement, or retreat.
Also ag·o·nis·ti·cal.

Origin of agonistic

1640–50; < Greek agōnistikós, equivalent to agōnist(ḗs) agonist + -ikos -ic
Related formsag·o·nis·ti·cal·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for agonistic

British Dictionary definitions for agonistic


/ (ˌæɡəˈnɪstɪk) /


striving for effect; strained
eager to win in discussion or argument; competitive

Word Origin for agonistic

C17: via Late Latin from Greek agōnistikos, from agōn contest
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