verb (used without object)
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Origin of brawl
synonym study for brawl
OTHER WORDS FROM brawlbrawler, nounbrawly, adjectiveoutbrawl, verb (used with object)un·brawl·ing, adjective
Words nearby brawl
What does brawl mean?
A brawl is a fight, especially a big one involving a lot of people.
Brawl can also be used as a verb meaning to fight or to participate in a brawl. A person who does this or who’s known for fighting in general can be called a brawler.
Much less commonly, brawl can also be used as a slang term for a wild party.
Other rare senses of brawl include its use as a noun referring to a loud, bubbling noise, like water flowing in a stream, or as a verb meaning to make such a noise.
Example: Police are investigating the post-concert brawl that left three people in the hospital.
Where does brawl come from?
The first records of the word brawl come from the 1300s. It comes from the Middle English brawlen, meaning “to raise a clamor,” “to quarrel,” or “to boast.” This word may be related to the Dutch brallen, meaning “to boast” or “to behave aggressively.”
Any fight can be called a brawl, but the word typically refers to a big, noisy, chaotic fight involving a whole group of people. A barroom brawl is a fight that breaks out among people in a bar. A bench-clearing brawl is a fight at a sports game, especially baseball, in which all of the players and coaches leave the bench to participate. Bench-clearing brawls play out in much the same way as most brawls: the fight starts with two people, and then more and more people join in, with fists swinging and people falling over. This might sound funny to watch, but brawls can result in serious injuries.
An organized fight like a boxing match might be called a brawl, especially to make it sound more intense or exciting.
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How is brawl used in real life?
Brawl is nearly always used to refer to big, messy fights involving lots of people. The term is especially associated with big fights at sports games.
Only went to the pub for a bit of grub and ended up watching a full blown brawl, police, ambulance, the lot. Welcome to Carlisle 🤷♀️
— Amber Gibney (@amber_gibney) October 5, 2018
FIGHT IN PHILLY! Foles gets LIT UP on an Int return, a huge brawl breaks out.
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) September 21, 2014
🗓 This day in sports: 5/19/98
Yankees and Orioles get into a heated bench-clearing brawl 😡
— Borgata Sports (@BorgataSports) May 19, 2020
Try using brawl!
Which of the following words is LEAST likely to be used to describe a brawl?
Example sentences from the Web for brawl
Shouting matches became street brawls, leading to at least 34 dead in the protests.
Good news: so is this grainy TMZ footage of a Bieber/Bloom Ibiza brawl.Solange Smacks Jay Z, Legolas Slaps Bieber, and the Biggest Celebrity Feuds of the Year|Amy Zimmerman|December 24, 2014|DAILY BEAST
If anyone could have stopped the Everest brawl of April 27, 2013, it was Arnot.
Just think of all the fun the political media will have with another Republican-on-Republican brawl, groans Fleischer.Lean In, Liz Cheney, but Please Don’t Win That Senate Seat|Michelle Cottle|July 18, 2013|DAILY BEAST
In 2000, Lewis was involved in a brawl that resulted in the stabbing deaths of two men.Football, Crime, and Allegations Against Aaron Hernandez|Ben Teitelbaum|June 21, 2013|DAILY BEAST
When Happy his taunted, his game suffers, and Barker is none too pleased, leading to a brawl for the ages.21 Best Celebrity Self-Parodies in Honor of ‘This is the End’|Marlow Stern|June 11, 2013|DAILY BEAST
Days passed by without a brawl, and Bland's valley saw more successive hours of peace than ever before.The Lone Star Ranger|Zane Grey
And a brawl there was, without any error, except of the men who hit their friends, and those who defended their enemies.Lorna Doone|R. D. Blackmore
At first I thought that it was some brawl between peasants in their cups, and I left them to settle their own affairs.The Exploits Of Brigadier Gerard|Arthur Conan Doyle
Censure not any if he be of grave repute; stand not up to take part in a brawl; have nought to do with a madman or a wicked one.
In a moment a brawl began in the crowd, none could say how or where.The History of England from the Accession of James II.|Thomas Babington Macaulay