Definition of argument in English:

argument

noun

  • 1An exchange of diverging or opposite views, typically a heated or angry one.

    ‘I've had an argument with my father’
    ‘heated arguments over public spending’
    mass noun ‘there was some argument about the decision’
    • ‘I didn't see it but after the debate a few students approached the MP and had a heated argument with her, one guy went so far as to say she wasn't welcome here.’
    • ‘She was having a heated argument with Guy about the vote that was coming around.’
    • ‘A heated argument and a fistfight broke out whereupon the student council began to agitate for the transfer of seven of the staff involved.’
    • ‘Apparently, there had been some sort of scuffle and a heated argument.’
    • ‘I'm sure Max is writing in good faith here, so let's address this tiresome argument once and for all.’
    • ‘The workers had a heated argument with the police a number of times.’
    • ‘I could tell there was not only no way around this, but it was going to be my first heated argument with my mom in three years.’
    • ‘I did not have the energy to engage in an argument or a heated debate about who had the right of way and who was wrong.’
    • ‘Miranda was having a heated argument with a dark haired short girl, dressed in skimpy clothing.’
    • ‘After a heated argument with a male friend, he said I was passive aggressive.’
    • ‘Apparently married bliss was intermittent, for the couple fell into a heated argument.’
    • ‘Why aren't there any debates and heated arguments?’
    • ‘The two men in the car began a heated argument with the family before making a phone call.’
    • ‘The adults were in a heated argument with another patient who was waiting to be seen in a clinic near the ATM.’
    • ‘Following the accident, heated arguments were exchanged between the two parties which later resulted in a scuffle.’
    • ‘She allegedly set fire to the building following a heated argument with her partner.’
    • ‘Last spring, I got into a heated argument with a bunch of lawyers about judicial activism.’
    • ‘Then I got into a heated argument with the snotty salesman who would not allow me to test it outside!’
    • ‘Of course, after a heated argument with Guy, she had become more convinced of her choice.’
    • ‘It is alleged he got involved in a heated argument with the supervisor after she made the request at short notice.’
    quarrel, disagreement, squabble, fight, difference of opinion, dispute, wrangle, clash, altercation, feud, dissension, war of words, contretemps, exchange of views
    View synonyms
  • 2A reason or set of reasons given in support of an idea, action or theory.

    ‘there is a strong argument for submitting a formal appeal’
    with clause ‘he rejected the argument that keeping the facility would be costly’
    • ‘This supports the argument that you should actively shop around to find a better deal.’
    • ‘Mr. Drabble relied upon two cases in particular in support of his argument that the delays were unlawful.’
    • ‘Two museum exhibitions support the argument that contemporary New Zealand fashion ignores its own past.’
    • ‘The fact that the men and dogs disappeared into caravans parked in a lay-by near to the field supports the argument that the dogs had just strayed.’
    • ‘Then in other news today, I see the argument that ideas in advertising should be paid for based on its usage.’
    • ‘That case was cited in Pirelli in support of the argument that, since in that case there was economic loss when the chimney was built, the cause of action arose then.’
    • ‘This appears to support the overall argument that some former stalking victims may go on to victimise others they perceive as threatening in some way.’
    • ‘However, this supports the argument that short leases meant tenants were accountable.’
    • ‘The claimant do not identify any legal or factual basis to support their argument that the policy should not apply to them.’
    • ‘First, they support the argument that intellectual property is a cultural phenomenon as well as an economic one.’
    • ‘The subsequent mortgages to his brother provide a somewhat objective support for his argument that he was indeed indebted to Dieter.’
    • ‘However, there are a number of reasons that would support an argument that the move was acceptable.’
    • ‘Their results support the argument that the supply of loans to real estate is not perfectly elastic.’
    • ‘This supports the defence argument that they were in the possession of the building at all times.’
    • ‘There is a strong argument that similar specialist centres should be designated for other lysosomal storage disorders.’
    • ‘The latest edition of the index supports the argument that the rate of increase in national house prices is tending to moderate.’
    • ‘This argument has lent some support to the argument that we in fact live in an open universe.’
    • ‘It makes this assertion in support of its argument that a longer sublease would have been easier to market than a shorter sublease.’
    • ‘The same line of thought was used to support an argument that two people could manually collect the information needed for purchasing.’
    • ‘The income v.s. apartment ratio is a key theory foundation for the argument that we should not compare Shanghai and New York City.’
    reasoning, line of reasoning, logic, case
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  • 3Logic Mathematics
    An independent variable associated with a function or proposition and determining its value. For example, in the expression y = F(x₁, x₂), the arguments of the function F are x₁ and x₂, and the value is y.

    • ‘I.e., in the equation, x + y = z, x and y are the arguments to the addition function, and z is the value.’
    • ‘Abel's theorem states that any such sum can be expressed as a fixed number p of these integrals, with integration arguments that are algebraic functions of the original arguments.’
    • ‘With Davenport he showed that any real indefinite diagonal quadratic form, in 5 or more variables, takes arbitrarily small values for nonzero integral arguments.’
    1. 3.1
      another term for amplitude (sense 4)
  • 4Linguistics
    Any of the noun phrases in a clause that are related directly to the verb, typically the subject, direct object, and indirect object.

    • ‘This paper focuses on the semantics of implicit arguments and compares it with that of explicit indefinites.’
    • ‘Tagalog allows other arguments to be subjects.’
    • ‘It does not contain a semantic predicate, either, because the anaphor is not an argument of the verb.’
    • ‘Section 3 shows that the operation ARG allows a satisfying analysis of prefixes and particles that introduce new arguments to the verb.’
  • 5archaic A summary of the subject matter of a book.

    theme, topic, subject matter
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Phrases

  • for the sake of argument

    • As a basis for discussion or reasoning.

      ‘suppose, for the sake of argument, that this is the legal position’
      • ‘Let us suppose, just for the sake of argument, that some big-time editor reads a self-published novel and decides to offer the writer a two-book contract on the strength of it.’
      • ‘The examples that follow are discussed simply for the sake of argument because they do not occur in Hebrew historiography.’
      • ‘Suppose, however, for the sake of argument, that he lied.’
      • ‘Suppose for the sake of argument that the government controls the export of capital.’
      • ‘Let us suppose, for the sake of argument, that this guard did in fact stop to think things over carefully.’

Origin

Middle English (in the sense ‘process of reasoning’): via Old French from Latin argumentum, from arguere ‘make clear, prove, accuse’.

Pronunciation

argument

/ˈɑːɡjʊm(ə)nt/