Meaning of “argument” in the English Dictionary

"argument" in British English

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argumentnoun [ C or U ]

uk /ˈɑːɡ.jə.mənt/ us /ˈɑːrɡ.jə.mənt/

argument noun [ C or U ] (DISAGREEMENT)

B1 a disagreement, or the process of disagreeing:

The children had an argument about/over what game to play.
He got into an argument with Jeff in the pub last night.
A decision was finally made after some heated argument.

More examples

  • Don't drag me into your argument! It's nothing to do with me.
  • We were having a friendly argument about Green politics.
  • It was a really nice day, spoilt only by a little argument in the car on the way home.
  • We had a dreadful argument in the restaurant, but he phoned me the next day to apologize.
  • We had an argument with our neighbours, and now they won't even talk to us.

argument noun [ C or U ] (REASON)

B2 a reason or reasons why you support or oppose an idea or suggestion, or the process of explaining these reasons:

Now that we've heard all the arguments for and against the proposal, let's vote on it.
[ + that ] Her husband was not convinced by her argument that they needed a bigger house.
I don't think that's a very strong/convincing/powerful argument.
The central argument (= main point) of the book is that some of the plays were not written by Shakespeare.

More examples

  • The essence of his argument was that education should continue throughout life.
  • Could you go over the main points of your argument again, Professor?
  • He is impervious to criticism and rational argument.
  • Students need the ability to construct a logical argument.
  • I'll just summarize the main points of the argument in a few words if I may.

(Definition of “argument” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"argument" in American English

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argumentnoun [ C ]

us /ˈɑr·ɡjə·mənt/

argument noun [ C ] (IDEAS)

literature the subject matter of a written work and the development of the ideas in it

An argument is also a brief summary of a written work

argument noun [ C ] (REASONS)

the reasons for your opinion about the truth of something or an explanation of why you believe something should be done:

A good argument can be made for providing health insurance for all children.

law An argument is a lawyer’s representation of a case in a court of law.

argument noun [ C ] (DISAGREEMENT)

a strong and sometimes angry disagreement in talking or discussing something:

I had an argument with my boss.

(Definition of “argument” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)