Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “hostile”

hostile

adjective uk   /ˈhɒs.taɪl/ us    /ˈhɑː.stəl/

hostile adjective (UNFRIENDLY)

C1 unfriendly and not liking or agreeing with something: a hostile crowd The president had a hostile reception in Ohio this morning. I'm not hostile to (= against) the idea of change as such.Not being friendlyNot saying muchBlunt and direct in speech and behaviour

hostile adjective (DIFFICULT)

C1 difficult or not suitable for living or growing: hostile weather conditions a hostile climate/environmentDescribing bad weatherFertile or infertile land

hostile adjective (ENEMY)

[before noun] connected with the enemy in a war: hostile aircraft/forcesViolent or aggressiveUnkind, cruel and unfeelingTreating people or animals badlyWar

hostile adjective (COMPANIES)

relating to situations in which one company wants to buy another company whose owners do not want to sell it: The company convinced investors to reject a hostile bid from Enterprise Oil Plc worth £1.5 billion. a hostile mergerMergers and takeovers
(Definition of hostile from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of hostile?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “hostile” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

hoppy

like hops (= dried fruit used to make beer)

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More