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c.1300, "to make reasoned statements to prove or refute a proposition," from Old French arguer "maintain an opinion or view; harry, reproach, accuse, blame" (12c.), from Latin argutare "to prattle, prate," frequentative of arguere "make clear, make known, prove, declare, demonstrate," from PIE *argu-yo-, from root *arg- "to shine, be white, bright, clear" (see argent). Meaning "to oppose, dispute" is from late 14c. Related: Argued; arguing.