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See more synonyms for brawl on Thesaurus.com
  1. a noisy quarrel, squabble, or fight.
  2. a bubbling or roaring noise; a clamor.
  3. Slang. a large, noisy party.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to quarrel angrily and noisily; wrangle.
  2. to make a bubbling or roaring noise, as water flowing over a rocky bed.
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Origin of brawl

1350–1400; (v.) Middle English brawlen, brallen to raise a clamor, quarrel, boast; of uncertain origin; (noun) Middle English braule, brall, derivative of the noun
Related formsbrawl·er, nounbrawl·y, adjectiveout·brawl, verb (used with object)un·brawl·ing, adjective


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Synonym study

1. See disorder.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for brawler

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Its professor and defender is sometimes at bottom a brawler and a clown.

  • He charges me as a brawler, a disturber of the peace and order of the city.


    William Ware

  • Am I, who was once a gentleman, a rascal as well as a brawler?

    Captain Ravenshaw

    Robert Neilson Stephens

  • He may be a brawler, or a proud man, or a sleek, or an artful.

    Recollections of a Policeman

    William Russell (aka Thomas Waters)

  • And though in no manner a brawler, a life of enterprise suited me mightily.

British Dictionary definitions for brawler


  1. a loud disagreement or fight
  2. US slang an uproarious party
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verb (intr)
  1. to quarrel or fight noisily; squabble
  2. (esp of water) to flow noisily
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Derived Formsbrawler, nounbrawling, noun, adjective

Word Origin

C14: probably related to Dutch brallen to boast, behave aggressively


  1. a dance: the English version of the branle
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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 brawler



late 14c., braulen "to cry out, scold, quarrel," probably related to Dutch brallen "to boast," or from French brailler "to shout noisily," frequentative of braire "to bray" (see bray (v.)). Meaning "quarrel, wrangle, squabble" is from early 15c. Related: Brawled; brawling.

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mid-15c., from brawl (v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper