[ noun kon-test; verb kuhn-test ]
See synonyms for: contestcontestedcontestingcontests on

  1. a race, conflict, or other competition between rivals, as for a prize.

  2. struggle for victory or superiority.

  1. vigorous or bitter conflict in argument; dispute; controversy: Their marriage was marred by perpetual contest.

verb (used with object)
  1. to struggle or fight for, as in battle.

  2. to argue against; dispute: to contest a controversial question;to contest a will.

  1. to call in question: They contested his right to speak.

  2. to contend for in rivalry.

verb (used without object)

Origin of contest

First recorded in 1595–1605; (verb) from Latin contestāri “to call to witness (in a lawsuit),” equivalent to con- con- + testārī “to testify, ” derivative of testis witness; the noun is derivative of the verb, or is from French conteste

synonym study For contest

2. See fight. 4. See compete.

Other words for contest

Other words from contest

  • con·test·a·ble, adjective
  • con·test·a·ble·ness, noun
  • con·test·a·bly, adverb
  • con·test·er, noun
  • con·test·ing·ly, adverb
  • pre·con·test, verb (used with object)
  • pre·con·test, noun
  • re·con·test, verb
  • sub·con·test, noun
  • su·per·con·test, noun
  • su·per·con·test, verb (used with object)
  • un·con·test·a·ble, adjective
  • un·con·test·a·bly, adverb

Words that may be confused with contest Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use contest in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for contest


  1. a formal game or match in which two or more people, teams, etc, compete and attempt to win

  2. a struggle for victory between opposing forces or interests

  1. (tr) to try to disprove; call in question

  2. (when intr, foll by with or against) to fight, dispute, or contend (with): contest an election

Origin of contest

C16: from Latin contestārī to introduce a lawsuit, from testis witness

Derived forms of contest

  • contestable, adjective
  • contestableness or contestability, noun
  • contestably, adverb
  • contestation, noun
  • contester, noun
  • contestingly, adverb

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