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See more synonyms for rebellion on Thesaurus.com
  1. open, organized, and armed resistance to one's government or ruler.
  2. resistance to or defiance of any authority, control, or tradition.
  3. the act of rebelling.
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Origin of rebellion

1300–50; Middle English rebellioun < Old French < Latin rebelliōn- (stem of rebelliō), equivalent to rebell(āre) to rebel + -iōn- -ion
Related formsnon·re·bel·lion, nounpre·re·bel·lion, adjectivesem·i·re·bel·lion, nounsub·re·bel·lion, noun
Can be confusedrebellion revolt revolution


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

Related Words


Examples from the Web for rebellion

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • This knowledge constrained the girl, even drove her into rebellion.


    W. A. Fraser

  • "I know who'll have to do all the work," the boy retorted, bitterness and rebellion in his tone.


    Mr. and Mrs. Haldeman-Julius

  • From the depths of her rebellion and forgiveness, slow tears rose.


    Mr. and Mrs. Haldeman-Julius

  • She understood only too well how deeply this rebellion was rooted.


    Mr. and Mrs. Haldeman-Julius

  • They had only just arrived and they were in perfect health, with plenty of courage for rebellion.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

British Dictionary definitions for rebellion


  1. organized resistance or opposition to a government or other authority
  2. dissent from an accepted moral code or convention of behaviour, dress, etc
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Word Origin

C14: via Old French from Latin rebelliō revolt (of those conquered); see rebel
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 rebellion


"war waged against a government by some portion of its subjects," mid-14c., from Old French rebellion (14c.) and directly from Latin rebellionem (nominative rebellio) "rebellion, revolt; renewal of war," from rebellis (see rebel (adj.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper