Definition of argue in English:



  • 1[reporting verb] Give reasons or cite evidence in support of an idea, action, or theory, typically with the aim of persuading others to share one's view.

    [with clause] ‘defense attorneys argue that the police lacked “probable cause” to arrest the driver’
    [with direct speech] ‘“It stands to reason,” she argued’
    • ‘Some might argue that they are currently at the top of their game but facing great challenges.’
    • ‘Some would argue that he should get his affairs as they currently stand in order.’
    • ‘Some argue that boxing has a lower death rate per year from acute injury than other sports.’
    • ‘Many argue that female models do not serve as good examples for women to follow.’
    • ‘Economists would now argue that this is no less justified than the labour theory of value.’
    • ‘Cynics will argue that the new rules are another way artificially to manipulate the sport.’
    • ‘Some even argue that turning away work makes you seem even more employable to a client!’
    • ‘Some argue that this blurring of the boundary between our work and private lives need not be a bad thing.’
    • ‘Many people would argue that once you have attended one you have a good idea of what the games are all about.’
    • ‘When you examine the teams man for man, I would argue that we are definitely the stronger.’
    • ‘Many now argue that the reporter is needed to provoke engagement with the viewer.’
    • ‘Optimists argue that companies are awash with cash and their balance sheets are strong.’
    • ‘Supporters argue that wind farms are a small price to pay for saving the planet.’
    • ‘We argue that their claim is built on a confusion and lacks a deep physical model.’
    • ‘Several writers argue that, when we are moved by this idea, our aim is to achieve equality.’
    • ‘They argue that only a total ban could give the industry any chance of a long-term future.’
    • ‘However the water authorities argue that it would be unfair to the rest of their customers.’
    • ‘Some people argue that libertarianism is not a theory of equality or mutual advantage.’
    • ‘The firms argue that all they did was agree to buy shares in each other's companies.’
    • ‘Rousseau argued that reason had led man out of his innocent state of nature into decadence.’
    contend, assert, declare, maintain, state, proclaim, advance, insist, hold, claim, aver, avow, reason, attest, expostulate, testify, swear, certify
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[with object]Persuade someone to do or not to do (something) by giving reasons.
      ‘I tried to argue him out of it’
      • ‘As far as she was concerned, Timothy was ‘Daddy’, and there was no arguing her out of it.’
      • ‘But, oddly enough Michelle had argued her into it and here sat Adri Rionach, at a piano on the stage in the main lounge of the hotel.’
      • ‘I tried to argue him out of paying, but he insisted.’
      • ‘You may discuss anything, but don't argue; don't try to argue them into a position.’
      • ‘He probably could send envoys to most UIA deputies and argue them out of supporting him.’
      • ‘‘I'll see what I can do,’ he said and hung up before she could argue him into changing his sentence to ‘I'll do it’.’
      • ‘He is equally non-judgmental about her baffled husband and the struck-off doctor who rescues her from one suicide bid and argues her out of another.’
      • ‘In vain would anyone try to argue me out of this feeling, it is stronger than any proofs; you might as well try to convince me that I do not exist.’
      • ‘I dutifully got out my trusty green and red markers and set to work on one, but in the end, I argued Dad out of the idea by saying that the sign would make us sound illicit.’
      • ‘She was said to have been martyred after refuting 50 pagan philosophers who were sent to argue her out of her faith.’
      • ‘Yemen's judges have pioneered apparently effective ways of ‘deprogramming’ them by arguing them out of their warped view of the world.’
      • ‘Sometimes, you can argue them into dropping the requirement but sometimes you can't.’
      • ‘I'm glad you liked the part where Angela's arguing Ember into ditching school, but I'm not sure why… er, thanks!’
      • ‘He's certainly right on the latter and I'm sure any of the legal bloggers could argue me into a corner on the former.’
      • ‘I've also had my fair share of people trying to argue me into believing, which I feel is entirely unfair as I have not tried to push my views upon other people, just presented my opinion when asked for it - as I am doing now.’
      persuade to, convince to, prevail on to, coax into
      talk someone round
      dissuade from, persuade against, talk out of
      View synonyms
  • 2[no object] Exchange or express diverging or opposite views, typically in a heated or angry way.

    ‘don't argue with me’
    figurative ‘I wasn't going to argue with a gun’
    [with object] ‘she was too tired to argue the point’
    • ‘Somebody once said that golf is a good walk spoiled, and you can't really argue with that.’
    • ‘The locals were incensed and came out of their homes to argue with the soldiers.’
    • ‘Right now he was exhausted and couldn't be bothered to hear her voice and argue with her.’
    • ‘It is hard to argue with the age and quality of most of the new signings, whether on loan or permanent.’
    • ‘It's hard to argue with any event that ends up with the best players in the world in the top positions.’
    • ‘He got his telescope and set it up and he watched Juliet argue with her parents in the front room.’
    • ‘He did not object and left, but the court was told the defendant started to argue with another man about it.’
    • ‘Surely will no one will argue with the sentiment that the company should and must do better.’
    • ‘He couldn't argue with that, seeing as he was the one who wrote the cursed things in the first place.’
    • ‘You get in rows with people every week and argue with them and you respect them as fellow pros.’
    • ‘There are few people who would argue with him that this is the best way to encourage recycling.’
    • ‘They don't get it right all the time, but we can't argue with their judgement on this one.’
    • ‘Few argue with the need to improve the shabby eyesore which blights much of Piccadilly.’
    • ‘Of that Borg is certain, and who would argue with one who dominated Wimbledon like no other?’
    • ‘That hasn't stopped you going on and on and on, arguing over a single word.’
    • ‘Instead, he is dangling before its recipients a lump sum that is difficult to argue with.’
    • ‘Jessica even started to argue with the people who so adamantly disliked my slideshow.’
    • ‘He was apparently angry after arguing with his girlfriend and took out that anger on the dog.’
    • ‘Certainly I don't argue with the people who say that by and large nobody ever watches it.’
    • ‘Few in this country would argue with the view that the regime is unacceptable.’
    quarrel, disagree, row, squabble, bicker, fight, wrangle, dispute, feud, have a row, bandy words, have words, cross swords, lock horns, be at each other's throats
    View synonyms


Middle English: from Old French arguer, from Latin argutari prattle frequentative of arguere make clear, prove, accuse.