[ dih-beyt ]
/ dɪˈbeɪt /


verb (used without object), de·bat·ed, de·bat·ing.

verb (used with object), de·bat·ed, de·bat·ing.

Nearby words

  1. debark,
  2. debarkation,
  3. debase,
  4. debasement,
  5. debatable,
  6. debater,
  7. debauch,
  8. debauched,
  9. debauchee,
  10. debaucherous

Origin of debate

1250–1300; (v.) Middle English debaten < Old French debatre, equivalent to de- de- + batre to beat < Latin battere, earlier battuere; (noun) Middle English debat < Old French, derivative of debatre

Related forms

Synonym study

5. See argue. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for debate

British Dictionary definitions for debate


/ (dɪˈbeɪt) /


a formal discussion, as in a legislative body, in which opposing arguments are put forward
discussion or dispute
the formal presentation and opposition of a specific motion, followed by a vote


to discuss (a motion), esp in a formal assembly
to deliberate upon (something)he debated with himself whether to go
Derived Formsdebater, noun

Word Origin for debate

C13: from Old French debatre to discuss, argue, from Latin battuere

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 debate
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper