[ bat-l ]
/ ˈbæt l /
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See synonyms for: battle / battled / battles / battling on Thesaurus.com


verb (used without object), bat·tled, bat·tling.

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), bat·tled, bat·tling.

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.



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“Was” is used for the indicative past tense of “to be,” and “were” is only used for the subjunctive past tense.

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Idioms for battle

    give / do battle, to enter into conflict; fight: He was ready to do battle for his beliefs.

Origin of battle

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

synonym study for battle

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.


battler, noun

Definition for battle (2 of 2)

[ bat-l ]
/ ˈbæt l /

verb (used with object), bat·tled, bat·tling.Archaic.

to furnish (a building or wall) with battlements; crenelate.

Origin of battle

1300–50; Middle English batailen<Middle French bataillier to provide with batailles.See battlement
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for battle

British Dictionary definitions for battle (1 of 3)

/ (ˈbætəl) /


a fight between large armed forces; military or naval engagement; combat
conflict; contention; strugglehis battle for recognition
do battle, give battle or 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 somewherehe battled through the crowd
(intr) Australian to scrape a living, esp by doing odd jobs

Derived forms of battle

battler, noun

Word Origin for battle

C13: from Old French bataile, from Late Latin battālia exercises performed by soldiers, from battuere to beat

British Dictionary definitions for battle (2 of 3)

/ (ˈbætəl) /


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

British Dictionary definitions for battle (3 of 3)

/ (ˈbætəl) /


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

Idioms and Phrases with battle


see half the battle; losing battle; pitched battle.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.