Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “war”

war

noun [C or U] uk   /wɔːr/ us    /wɔːr/
A2 armed fighting between two or more countries or groups, or a particular example of this: nuclear war a war film/grave/hero/poet If this country goes to (= starts to fight in a) war we will have to face the fact that many people will die. Britain and France declared war on Germany in 1939 as a result of the invasion of Poland. War broke out between the two countries after a border dispute. They've been at war for the last five years. He died in the First World War/the Vietnam war. war of attrition a war that is fought over a long period and only ends when one side has neither the soldiers and equipment nor the determination left to continue fighting war of nerves a situation, often before a competition or battle, in which each opposing side attempts to frighten or discourage the other by making threats or by showing how strong it is C2 any situation in which there is strong competition between opposing sides or a great fight against something harmful: The past few months have witnessed a price war between leading supermarkets. The government are to step up their attempt to wage war against/on drugs.
(Definition of war from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of war?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Arguments & disagreements, but you might be interested in these topics from the Expressing opposition & disapproval topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “war” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

monster

any imaginary frightening creature, especially one that is large and strange

Word of the Day

What’s that lovely smell?

by Kate Woodford,
October 29, 2014
As adult humans, we can distinguish about 10,000 different smells. It’s no wonder, then, that we have so many words and expressions to describe them. This week we’re taking a look at those smell words – words that describe good smells and words that describe bad smells. Most smell words are either

Read More 

high-frequency trading noun

October 27, 2014
a type of stock market trading that uses very complex technology to trade extremely quickly, often making tiny profits which nevertheless add up to substantial sums Lewis’s book, Flash Boys, is driving a huge amount of attention toward the topic of high frequency trading, and it has rekindled some of

Read More