AskDefine | Define contentious

Dictionary Definition

contentious adj
1 inclined or showing an inclination to dispute or disagree, even to engage in law suits; "a style described as abrasive and contentious"; "a disputatious lawyer"; "a litigious and acrimonious spirit" [syn: disputatious, disputative, litigious]
2 involving or likely to cause controversy; "a central and contentious element of the book"- Tim W.Ferfuson
3 having or showing a ready disposition to fight; "bellicose young officers"; "a combative impulse"; "a contentious nature" [syn: battleful, bellicose, combative]

User Contributed Dictionary



contentiosus, confer French contentieux.


  1. Marked by heated arguments or controversy.
  2. Given to struggling with others out of jealousy or discord.


marked by controversy
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