AskDefine | Define contend

Dictionary Definition



1 maintain or assert; "He contended that Communism had no future" [syn: postulate]
2 have an argument about something [syn: argue, debate, fence]
3 to make the subject of dispute, contention, or litigation; "They contested the outcome of the race" [syn: contest, repugn]
4 compete for something; engage in a contest; measure oneself against others [syn: compete, vie]
5 come to terms or deal successfully with; "We got by on just a gallon of gas"; "They made do on half a loaf of bread every day" [syn: cope, get by, make out, make do, grapple, deal, manage]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. to strive in opposition; to contest; to dispute; to vie; to quarrel; to fight.
    For never two such kingdoms did contend without much fall of blood.
  2. to struggle or exert one's self to obtain or retain possession of, or to defend.
    You sit above, and see vain men below contend for what you only can bestow.
  3. to strive in debate; to engage in discussion; to dispute; to argue.
    The question which our author would contend for - many things he fiercely contended about were trivial.

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

affirm, agonize, allege, announce, annunciate, antagonize, argue, argufy, assert, assever, asseverate, aver, avouch, avow, bandy words, battle, beat against, beat up against, bicker, bicker over, box, brawl, breast the wave, broil, brook no denial, buck, buffet, buffet the waves, bump heads, cavil, charge, choplogic, claim, clash, close, close with, collide, combat, come to blows, compete with, confront, contend about, contend against, contest, contrapose, contraposit, contrast, cope with, counteract, cross swords, cut and thrust, declare, defend, dictate, discept, dispute, duel, encounter, enjoin, enunciate, exchange blows, express, face, fence, feud, fight, fight a duel, fight against, fight over, front, give and take, give satisfaction, grapple, grapple with, grunt and sweat, hassle, have, have it out, hold, huff and puff, insist, insist on, insist upon, issue a manifesto, join battle with, join issue, jostle, joust, justify, labor against, lay down, lie opposite, lock horns, logomachize, maintain, manifesto, match, meet, meet head-on, militate against, mix it up, moot, offer resistance, oppose, oppugn, persist, pettifog, plead, polarize, polemicize, polemize, pose against, predicate, prescribe, press, proclaim, profess, pronounce, protest, put, put in opposition, put it, quarrel, quarrel over, quibble, rassle, reluct, reluctate, report, resist, riot, rival, run a tilt, say, scramble, scuffle, set down, set over against, skirmish, spar, speak, speak out, speak up, squabble over, stand, stand for, stand on, stand opposed, stand opposite, state, stem the tide, stick to, strive, strive against, struggle, struggle against, submit, subtend, take issue with, take no denial, take on, take sides, tell, thrash out, thrust and parry, tilt, tourney, try conclusions, tug, tussle, urge, vie, vie with, vindicate, wage war, war, warrant, withstand, wrangle, wrangle over, wrestle
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