"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[bat-l] /ˈbæt l/
a hostile encounter or engagement between opposing military forces:
the battle of Waterloo.
participation in such hostile encounters or engagements:
wounds received in battle.
a fight between two persons or animals:
ordering a trial by battle to settle the dispute.
any conflict or struggle:
a battle for control of the Senate.
Archaic. a battalion.
verb (used without object), battled, battling.
to engage in battle:
ready to battle with the enemy.
to work very hard or struggle; strive:
to battle for freedom.
verb (used with object), battled, battling.
to fight (a person, army, cause, etc.):
We battled strong winds and heavy rains in our small boat.
to force or accomplish by fighting, struggling, etc.:
He battled his way to the top of his profession.
give / do battle, to enter into conflict; fight:
He was ready to do battle for his beliefs.
Origin of battle1
1250-1300; Middle English bataile < Old French < Vulgar Latin *battālia for Late Latin battuālia (neuter plural) gladiatorial exercises, equivalent to battu(ere) to strike (see bate2) + -ālia, neuter plural of -ālis -al2
Related forms
battler, noun
1. contest, conflict, war. Battle, action, skirmish mean a conflict between organized armed forces. A battle is a prolonged and general conflict pursued to a definite decision: the Battle of the Bulge in World War II. A skirmish is a slight engagement, often on the periphery of an area of battle: several minor skirmishes. An action can be a battle or a skirmish or can refer to actual fighting or combat: a major military action; action along the border; He saw action in the campaign. 2. warfare, combat, fighting. 10. conflict. 7. contest.


[bat-l] /ˈbæt l/
verb (used with object), battled, battling. Archaic.
to furnish (a building or wall) with battlements; crenelate.
1300-50; Middle English batailen < Middle French bataillier to provide with batailles. See battlement Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for battle
  • As one historian notes, the arizonan had lost much of his zest for battle.
  • This makes the plot easier to follow, and captures the urgency of the climactic battle.
  • She used a whip that she could charge with energy, as a weapon, in battle.
  • Ship of the line a sailing warship capable of standing in the line of battle.
  • He later joins the brotherhood and is frozen during the final battle.
  • He is also the character the player controls when not in battle.
  • He now has a mechanical right arm which he uses as a weapon during battle.
  • There is nothing left to do but to take his own place in the coming battle.
  • Furthermore, the poet focuses on the strong emotions of those who died while in battle.
  • She derided them as typewriter strategists who were seldom at the scenes of battle.
British Dictionary definitions for battle


a fight between large armed forces; military or naval engagement; combat
conflict; contention; struggle: his battle for recognition
do battle, give battle, join battle, to start fighting
when intr, often foll by against, for, or with. to fight in or as if in military combat; contend (with): she battled against cancer
to struggle in order to achieve something or arrive somewhere: he battled through the crowd
(intransitive) (Austral) to scrape a living, esp by doing odd jobs
Derived Forms
battler, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French bataile, from Late Latin battālia exercises performed by soldiers, from battuere to beat


a town in SE England, in East Sussex: site of the Battle of Hastings (1066); medieval abbey. Pop: 5190 (2001)


Kathleen. born 1948, US opera singer: a coloratura soprano, she made her professional debut in 1972 and sang with New York City's Metropolitan Opera (1977–94)
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
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Word Origin and History for battle

c.1300, from Old French bataille "battle, single combat," also "inner turmoil, harsh circumstances; army, body of soldiers," from Late Latin battualia "exercise of soldiers and gladiators in fighting and fencing," from Latin battuere "to beat, to strike" (see batter (v.)). Phrase battle royal "fight involving several combatants" is from 1670s.


early 14c., "to fight," from French batailler (12c.), from bataille (see battle (n.)). Related: Battled; battling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with battle
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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