[ too r-nuh-muh nt, tur- ]
/ ˈtʊər nə mənt, ˈtɜr- /


a trial of skill in some game, in which competitors play a series of contests: a chess tournament.
a meeting for contests in a variety of sports, as between teams of different nations.
  1. a contest or martial sport in which two opposing parties of mounted and armored combatants fought for a prize, with blunted weapons and in accordance with certain rules.
  2. a meeting at an appointed time and place for the performance of knightly exercises and sports.

Origin of tournament

1175–1225; Middle English tornement < Old French torneiement, equivalent to torne(ier) to tourney + -ment -ment
Related formspre·tour·na·ment, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tournament

British Dictionary definitions for tournament


/ (ˈtʊənəmənt, ˈtɔː-, ˈtɜː-) /


a sporting competition in which contestants play a series of games to determine an overall winner
a meeting for athletic or other sporting contestantsan archery tournament
medieval history
  1. (originally) a martial sport or contest in which mounted combatants fought for a prize
  2. (later) a meeting for knightly sports and exercises

Word Origin for tournament

C13: from Old French torneiement, from torneier to fight on horseback, literally: to turn, from the constant wheeling round of the combatants; see tourney
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 tournament



c.1300, "medieval martial arts contest," from Old French torneiement "contest between groups of knights on horseback" (mid-12c.), from torneier "to joust, tilt" (see tourney). Modern use, in reference to games of skill, is recorded from 1761.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper