battle noun

1 between armies

ADJ. bloody, fierce | pitched The two armies fought a pitched battle on the plain. | decisive | great, important, major | famous, historic | land, naval, sea

VERB + BATTLE fight (in) | win | lose | do, give, go into, join Charles V refused to give battle. The two armies joined battle. | send sb into Many young men were sent into battle without proper training.

BATTLE + VERB begin, take place | rage | continue | be over, end

PREP. at a/the ~ Napoleon was defeated at the Battle of Waterloo. | in (a/the) ~ He died in battle.

2 violent fight between two groups

ADJ. fierce | pitched | running | gun


PREP. ~ against Police fought a pitched battle against demonstrators. | ~ between a gun battle between police and drug smugglers | ~ with Scores of people have been hurt in running battles with police.

3 struggle

ADJ. bitter, fierce | real There's now a real battle at the top of the First Division. | constant, continuing, long, long-running, ongoing, prolonged | losing, uphill We seem to be fighting a losing battle. | successful | court, legal

VERB + BATTLE be engaged in, do, fight Are you prepared to do battle with your insurance company over the claim? | face | win | lose

BATTLE + VERB begin | be over, end

PREP. ~ against his long battle against cancer | ~ between a fierce battle between developers and the local community | ~ for the battle for human rights | ~ over The government now faces a new battle over tax increases. | ~ with They are engaged in a long-running legal battle with their neighbours.

PHRASES a battle of ideas/words, a battle of wills/wits, a battle royal (= a major battle in which all available forces take part), fight your own battles My parents believed in leaving me to fight my own battles.