Share this entry

insurgent Line breaks: in¦sur|gent
Pronunciation: /ɪnˈsəːdʒ(ə)nt/

Definition of insurgent in English:


A person fighting against a government or invading force; a rebel or revolutionary: an attack by armed insurgents
More example sentences
  • Leniency also should be extended to those insurgents and terrorists who give up the armed struggle.
  • With crimes like this, it's not hard to see why the insurgents keep attacking the police.
  • If you use terms like militants, insurgents, guerrillas, you are not saying these people are evil.


[attributive] Back to top  
1Rising in active revolt: alleged links with insurgent groups
More example sentences
  • Taking a page out of the tactics of Anglo-American imperialism in Italy, the Stalinist bureaucracy leaves the insurgent proletariat to be crushed by the retreating Nazis.
  • No, I do not remember any crimes being committed, other than the work of terrorist organisations and insurgent forces.
  • But the turning point of the film, the Warsaw Ghetto uprising where 40,000 insurgent Jews held off the Nazis for almost a month with few weapons, is watched from a distance.
1.1Relating to rebels: a series of insurgent attacks
More example sentences
  • According to reports there were very few insurgent casualties, since rebels had withdrawn from their positions before the attacks.
  • The higher than expected cost of protecting workers against insurgent attacks - about 25 cents of every reconstruction dollar now pays for security - has sent the cost of projects skyward.
  • That was followed by a very bloody year and growing insurgent attacks.


Mid 18th century: via French from Latin insurgent- 'arising', from the verb insurgere, from in- 'into, towards' + surgere 'to rise'.



Pronunciation: /ɪnˈsəːdʒ(ə)ns/
Example sentences
  • As memories of 17th-century Catholic insurgence began to fade, toleration seemed to increase.
  • Esther was an activist whose potent insurgence foiled a plot of global proportions.
  • It was a statement of defiance against the insurgence.


Pronunciation: /ɪnˈsəːdʒ(ə)nsi/
noun (plural insurgencies)
Example sentences
  • For the past few years, most news reports from Indonesia have featured terrorists, regional insurgencies, and human rights violations.
  • The end of the First World War initiated the greatest wave of working class insurgency ever seen in Europe.
  • But it is nevertheless true that they know a fair bit about the limits of sham democracies when confronted with insurgencies.

Words that rhyme with insurgent

convergent, detergent, divergent, emergent, resurgent, urgent

Definition of insurgent in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day confidant
Pronunciation: ˈkɒnfɪdant
a person with whom one shares a secret...