See more synonyms for argumentative on
  1. fond of or given to argument and dispute; disputatious; contentious: The law students were an unusually argumentative group.
  2. of or characterized by argument; controversial: an argumentative attitude toward political issues.
  3. 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. 2018

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


  1. given to arguing; contentious
  2. 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