fond of or given to argument and dispute; disputatious; contentious: The law students were an unusually argumentative group.
of or characterized by argument; controversial: an argumentative attitude toward political issues.
Law. arguing or containing arguments suggesting that a certain fact tends toward a certain conclusion.

Origin of argumentative

First recorded in 1635–45; argument + -ative
Related formsar·gu·men·ta·tive·ly, adverbar·gu·men·ta·tive·ness, nounnon·ar·gu·men·ta·tive, adjectivenon·ar·gu·men·ta·tive·ly, adverbnon·ar·gu·men·ta·tive·ness, nouno·ver·ar·gu·men·ta·tive, adjectiveo·ver·ar·gu·men·ta·tive·ly, adverbo·ver·ar·gu·men·ta·tive·ness, nounun·ar·gu·men·ta·tive, adjectiveun·ar·gu·men·ta·tive·ly, adverbun·ar·gu·men·ta·tive·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for argumentative

Contemporary Examples of argumentative

Historical Examples of argumentative

  • "That's not the case," he observed with argumentative calmness.

    The Market-Place

    Harold Frederic

  • Uncle Remus seemed to boil over with argumentative indignation.

    Nights With Uncle Remus

    Joel Chandler Harris

  • Voices from forward came to him, muffled, but angry and argumentative.

    The Wreck of the Titan

    Morgan Robertson

  • “I think your fear is all an empty affair,” he said, in an argumentative tone.

    That Girl Montana

    Marah Ellis Ryan

  • But he was an old bird, and not to be caught in an argumentative cage.

    Long Live the King

    Mary Roberts Rinehart

British Dictionary definitions for argumentative



given to arguing; contentious
characterized by argument; controversial
Derived Formsargumentatively, adverbargumentativeness, noun
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

Word Origin and History for argumentative

mid-15c., "pertaining to arguments," from Old French argumentatif or directly from Latin argumentat-, past participle stem of argumentari (see argue) + -ive. Meaning "fond of arguing" is recorded from 1660s. Related: Argumentatively; argumentativeness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper