a call or summons to engage in any contest, as of skill, strength, etc.
something that by its nature or character serves as a call to battle, contest, special effort, etc.: Space exploration offers a challenge to humankind.
a call to fight, as a battle, a duel, etc.
a demand to explain, justify, etc.: a challenge to the treasurer to itemize expenditures.
difficulty in a job or undertaking that is stimulating to one engaged in it.
Military. the demand of a sentry for identification or a countersign.
Law. a formal objection to the qualifications of a particular juror, to his or her serving, or to the legality of an entire jury. Compare peremptory challenge.
the assertion that a vote is invalid or that a voter is not legally qualified.
Biology. the process of inducing or assessing physiological or immunological activity by exposing an organism to a specific substance.
Hunting. the crying of a hound on finding a scent.
verb (used with object), challenged, challenging.
to summon to a contest of skill, strength, etc.
to take exception to; call in question: to challenge the wisdom of a procedure.
to demand as something due or rightful.
Military. to halt and demand identification or countersign from.
Law. to take formal exception to (a juror or jury).
to have a claim to; invite; arouse; stimulate: a matter which challenges attention.
to assert that (a vote) is invalid.
to assert that (a voter) is not qualified to vote.
to expose an organism to a specific substance in order to assess its physiological or immunological activity.
Archaic. to lay claim to.
verb (used without object), challenged, challenging.
to make or issue a challenge.
Hunting. (of hounds) to cry or give tongue on picking up the scent.
donated or given by a private, corporate, or government benefactor on condition that the recipient raise an additional specified amount from the public: a challenge grant.

1175–1225; Middle English chalenge < Old French, variant of chalonge < Latin calumnia calumny

challengeable, adjective
prechallenge, verb (used with object), prechallenged, prechallenging.
rechallenge, verb (used with object), rechallenged, rechallenging.
unchallengeable, adjective
unchallengeably, adverb

11. dare, bid, invite. 12. question, impute, doubt. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
challenge (ˈtʃælɪndʒ)
1.  to invite or summon (someone to do something, esp to take part in a contest)
2.  (also intr) to call (something) into question; dispute
3.  to make demands on; stimulate: the job challenges his ingenuity
4.  to order (a person) to halt and be identified or to give a password
5.  law to make formal objection to (a juror or jury)
6.  to lay claim to (attention, etc)
7.  (intr) hunting (of a hound) to cry out on first encountering the scent of a quarry
8.  to inject (an experimental animal immunized with a test substance) with disease microorganisms to test for immunity to the disease
9.  a call to engage in a fight, argument, or contest
10.  a questioning of a statement or fact; a demand for justification or explanation
11.  a demanding or stimulating situation, career, object, etc
12.  a demand by a sentry, watchman, etc, for identification or a password
13.  (US) an assertion that a person is not entitled to vote or that a vote is invalid
14.  law a formal objection to a person selected to serve on a jury (challenge to the polls) or to the whole body of jurors (challenge to the array)
[C13: from Old French chalenge, from Latin calumniacalumny]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1292, from O.Fr. chalenge "accusation, claim, dispute," from L. calumnia "trickery" (see calumny). Accusatory connotations died out 17c. Meaning "a calling to fight" is from 1530. Challenged as a euphemism for "disabled" dates from 1985.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Exploring the promise and challenge of a new energy supply.
They add to the sense that this place is truly wild, and well worth the
It's always a challenge to do that, but it's an exciting challenge.
But almost any technical photographic challenge interested him.
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