Pitched battle
Battle Bat"tle, n. [OE. bataille, bataile, F. bataille battle, OF., battle, battalion, fr. L. battalia, battualia, the fighting and fencing exercises of soldiers and gladiators, fr. batuere to strike, beat. Cf. {Battalia}, 1st {Battel}, and see {Batter}, v. t. ] 1. A general action, fight, or encounter, in which all the divisions of an army are or may be engaged; an engagement; a combat. [1913 Webster]

2. A struggle; a contest; as, the battle of life. [1913 Webster]

The whole intellectual battle that had at its center the best poem of the best poet of that day. --H. Morley. [1913 Webster]

3. A division of an army; a battalion. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

The king divided his army into three battles. --Bacon. [1913 Webster]

The cavalry, by way of distinction, was called the battle, and on it alone depended the fate of every action. --Robertson. [1913 Webster]

4. The main body, as distinct from the van and rear; battalia. [Obs.] --Hayward. [1913 Webster]

Note: Battle is used adjectively or as the first part of a self-explaining compound; as, battle brand, a ``brand'' or sword used in battle; battle cry; battlefield; battle ground; battle array; battle song. [1913 Webster]

{Battle piece}, a painting, or a musical composition, representing a battle.

{Battle royal}. (a) A fight between several gamecocks, where the one that stands longest is the victor. --Grose. (b) A contest with fists or cudgels in which more than two are engaged; a m[^e]l['e]e. --Thackeray.

{Drawn battle}, one in which neither party gains the victory.

{To give battle}, to attack an enemy.

{To join battle}, to meet the attack; to engage in battle.

{Pitched battle}, one in which the armies are previously drawn up in form, with a regular disposition of the forces.

{Wager of battle}. See under {Wager}, n. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Conflict; encounter; contest; action.

Usage: {Battle}, {Combat}, {Fight}, {Engagement}. These words agree in denoting a close encounter between contending parties. Fight is a word of less dignity than the others. Except in poetry, it is more naturally applied to the encounter of a few individuals, and more commonly an accidental one; as, a street fight. A combat is a close encounter, whether between few or many, and is usually premeditated. A battle is commonly more general and prolonged. An engagement supposes large numbers on each side, engaged or intermingled in the conflict. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • pitched battle — n 1.) a big battle between armies or large groups of people ▪ a pitched battle between the rival groups 2.) an angry and usually long argument ▪ She wanted to avoid another pitched battle with her son. →↑skirmish …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • pitched battle — pitched battles N COUNT A pitched battle is a very fierce and violent fight involving a large number of people. For the next three nights pitched battles were fought with the police …   English dictionary

  • pitched battle — n. 1. a battle in which placement of troops and the line of combat are relatively fixed before the action 2. a closely fought battle of great intensity …   English World dictionary

  • pitched battle — noun count 1. ) a battle between two armies who have already planned their positions 2. ) an angry argument or fight, especially one that continues for a long time …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • pitched battle — ► NOUN ▪ a battle in which the time and place are determined beforehand, rather than a casual or chance skirmish …   English terms dictionary

  • Pitched battle — A pitched battle is a combat fought on a battlefield expected to be site of engagement by both sides. [p.649, Blackwood s] The location, time and disposition of troops are therefore well known, and either side has the option to disengage either… …   Wikipedia

  • pitched battle — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms pitched battle : singular pitched battle plural pitched battles 1) an angry argument or fight, especially one that continues for a long time 2) a battle between two armies who have already planned their… …   English dictionary

  • Pitched battle — Pitch Pitch, v. t. [OE. picchen; akin to E. pick, pike.] 1. To throw, generally with a definite aim or purpose; to cast; to hurl; to toss; as, to pitch quoits; to pitch hay; to pitch a ball. [1913 Webster] 2. To thrust or plant in the ground, as… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pitched battle — 1. a battle in which the orderly arrangement of armed forces and the location have been predetermined. 2. an encounter in which the antagonists are completely and intensely engaged: The dispute evolved into a pitched battle between management and …   Universalium

  • pitched battle — noun (C) 1 an angry and usually long quarrel or argument: We had a pitched battle with the council before they d agree to repair the road. 2 a battle between armies who have already chosen and prepared their positions compare skirmish 1 (1) …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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