[noun kon-test; verb kuhn-test]


verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to dispute; contend; compete.

Origin of contest

1595–1605; (v.) < Latin contestāri to call to witness (in a lawsuit), equivalent to con- con- + testārī to testify, derivative of testis witness; (noun) derivative of the v., or < French conteste
Related formscon·test·a·ble, adjectivecon·test·a·ble·ness, nouncon·test·a·bly, adverbcon·test·er, nouncon·test·ing·ly, adverbpre·con·test, verb (used with object)pre·con·test, nounre·con·test, verbsub·con·test, nounsu·per·con·test, nounsu·per·con·test, verb (used with object)un·con·test·a·ble, adjectiveun·con·test·a·bly, adverbun·con·test·ed, adjectiveun·con·test·ed·ly, adverbwell-con·test·ed, adjective
Can be confusedcontend contest

Synonyms for contest

Synonym study

2. See fight. 4. See compete. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for contested


noun (ˈkɒntɛst)

a formal game or match in which two or more people, teams, etc, compete and attempt to win
a struggle for victory between opposing forces or interests

verb (kənˈtɛst)

(tr) to try to disprove; call in question
(when intr, foll by with or against) to fight, dispute, or contend (with)contest an election
Derived Formscontestable, adjectivecontestableness or contestability, nouncontestably, adverbcontestation, nouncontester, nouncontestingly, adverb

Word Origin for contest

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

1670s, past participle adjective from contest (v.). Of elections, from 1771, American English.



c.1600, from French contester "dispute, oppose," from Middle French, from Latin contestari (litem) "to call to witness, bring action," from com- "together" (see com-) + testari "to bear witness," from testis "a witness," (see testament). Calling witnesses as the first step in a legal combat. Related: Contestable; contested; contesting.



1640s, from contest (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper