warpath

[ wawr-path, -pahth ]
/ ˈwɔrˌpæθ, -ˌpɑθ /

noun, plural war·paths [wawr-path z, -pahth z, -paths, -pahths] /ˈwɔrˌpæðz, -ˌpɑðz, -ˌpæθs, -ˌpɑθs/.

the path or course taken by American Indians on a warlike expedition.

Idioms for warpath

    on the warpath,
    1. seeking, preparing for, or engaged in war or aggressive pursuit.
    2. in a state of anger or indignation; hostile.

Origin of warpath

An Americanism dating back to 1745–55; war1 + path
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for on the warpath

warpath
/ (ˈwɔːˌpɑːθ) /

noun

the route taken by North American Indians on a warlike expedition
on the warpath
  1. preparing to engage in battle
  2. informal in a state of anger
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

Culture definitions for on the warpath

on the warpath

From a Native American expression for war, to be “on the warpath” is to be exceedingly angry and to be inclined to take some hostile action: “Watch out! John is on the warpath today.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with on the warpath (1 of 2)

on the warpath

Furious and on a hostile course of action, as in When the meat wasn't delivered, the chef went on the warpath. This expression was an English translation of a Native American term that literally means “a path used by a war party.” Go on the war path thus meant “go to battle.” It was used in this way by James Fenimore Cooper in The Deerslayer (1841); its present hyperbolic use dates from the late 1800s.

Idioms and Phrases with on the warpath (2 of 2)

warpath

see on the warpath.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.