• An argument, or discussion, usually in an ordered or formal setting, often with more than two people, generally ending with a vote or other decision.
  • An informal and spirited but generally civil discussion of opposing views.
  • Discussion of opposing views.
  • A type of literary composition, taking the form of a discussion or disputation, commonly found in the vernacular medieval poetry of many European countries, as well as in medieval Latin.
  • Strife, discord.



  • From Middle English debaten, from Old French debatre ("to fight, contend, debate, also literally to beat down"), from Romanic desbattere, from Latin dis- ("apart, in different directions") + battuere.

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