Definition of duel in English:


Line breaks: duel
Pronunciation: /ˈdjuːəl


chiefly • historical

verb (duels, duelling, duelled; US duels, dueling, dueled)

[no object] Back to top  
  • Fight a duel or duels: shall we duel over this? (as noun duelling) duelling had been forbidden for serving officers
    More example sentences
    • So, after days spent duelling and fighting, I was able to go back and soak in warm mineral baths overlooking the magnificent Tuscan countryside.
    • They made it look easy, and I thought that maybe I could win the fight by dueling like they had.
    • At the time of going to Press last night, the two combatants were duelling in a tie breaker to decide who advances to the quarter-finals.
    fight a duel; fight, clash, battle, combat, contend
    archaic go out



(US dueler) noun
More example sentences
  • The two duellers circled each other cautiously.
  • The duelers were face to face, just a sword length away.
  • Then, at a signal from the general, the duelers unsheathed their wooden swords and assumed combat stances.


(US duelist) noun
More example sentences
  • Dueling was illegal in both New York and New Jersey; New York duelists frequented this spot because its remoteness made it unlikely that they would be disturbed.
  • Like enormous duellists, they approached each other with blades whirling and the first time the blades met they shot off a tremendous shower of sparks.
  • Minutes passed rapidly and both duellists ran out of breath.


late 15th century: from Latin duellum, archaic and literary form of bellum 'war', used in medieval Latin with the meaning 'combat between two persons', partly influenced by dualis 'of two'. The original sense was 'single combat used to decide a judicial dispute'; the sense 'contest to decide a point of honour' dates from the early 17th century.

More definitions of duel

Definition of duel in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day astrogation
Pronunciation: ˌastrəˈgāSHən
(in science fiction) navigation in outer space