1. verb If you fight something unpleasant, you try in a determined way to prevent it or stop it happening. [V n] ⇒ Mother Teresa is an elderly nun who has devoted her life to fighting poverty. [V n] ⇒ More units to fight forest fires are planned. [V + against] ⇒ I've spent a lifetime fighting against racism and prejudice. Fight is also a noun. [+ against] ⇒ ...the fight against drug addiction. 2. verb If you fight for something, you try in a determined way to get it or achieve it. [V + for] ⇒ Our Government should be fighting for an end to food subsidies. [V for n] ⇒ Lee had to fight hard for his place on the expedition. [V to-inf] ⇒ I told him how we had fought to hold on to the company. [V n prep/adv] ⇒ The team has fought its way to the cup final.
Fight is also a noun. [+ for] ⇒ I too am committing myself to continue the fight for justice.
3. verb If an army or group fights a battle with another army or group, they oppose each other with weapons. You can also say that two armies or groups fight a battle. [V n + over/for] ⇒ The two men fought a battle over land and water rights. [V n + with] ⇒ In the latest incident at the weekend police fought a gun battle with a gang which used hand grenades against them. [V n + for/over] ⇒ The Sioux had always fought other tribes for territorial rights. [Also V, V n] 4. verb If a person or army fights in a battle or a war, they take part in it. [V] ⇒ He fought in the war and was taken prisoner by the Americans. [V + for] ⇒ If I were a young man I would sooner go to prison than fight for this country. [V n] ⇒ My father did leave his university to fight the Germans. [V n prep/adv] ⇒ Last month rebels fought their way into the capital. fighting
uncountable noun ⇒ More than nine hundred people have died in the fighting. 6. verb If one person fights with another, or fights them, the two people hit or kick each other because they want to hurt each other. You can also say that two people fight. [V + with] ⇒ As a child she fought with her younger sister. [V n] ⇒ I did fight him, I punched him but it was like hitting a wall. [V n + for] ⇒ He wrenched the crutch from Jacob, who didn't fight him for it. [V] ⇒ I refuse to act that way when my kids fight. [V n] ⇒ You get a lot of unruly drunks fighting each other.
Fight is also a noun. [+ with] ⇒ He had had a fight with Smith and bloodied his nose.
7. verb If one person fights with another, or fights them, they have an angry disagreement or quarrel. You can also say that two people fight. [informal] [V + with] ⇒ She was always arguing with him and fighting with him. [V n] ⇒ Gwendolen started fighting her teachers. [V + about/over] [V n prep] ⇒ Mostly, they fight about paying bills. [Also V]
Fight is also a noun. ⇒ We think maybe he took off because he had a big fight with his dad the night before.
8. verb If you fight your way to a place, you move towards it with great difficulty, for example because there are a lot of people or obstacles in your way. [V n prep/adv] ⇒ I fought my way into a carriage just before the doors closed. [V way prep/adv] ⇒ Peter fought his way through a blizzard to save one of the chickens. 9. countable noun
A fight is a boxing match. ⇒ This was Hyer's last fight, for no one else challenged him. ⇒ The referee stopped the fight.
10. verb To fight means to take part in a boxing match. [V] ⇒ In a few hours' time one of the world's most famous boxers will be fighting in Britain for the first time. [V n] ⇒ I'd like to fight him because he's undefeated and I want to be the first man to beat him. [V n + for] ⇒ I'd like to fight him for the title. 11. verb If you fight an election, you are a candidate in the election and try to win it. [V n] ⇒ The former party treasurer helped raise almost £40 million to fight the election campaign. 12. countable noun [usu sing] You can use fight to refer to a contest such as an election or a sports match. [journalism] ⇒ ...the fight for power between the two parties. 13. verb If you fight a case or a court action, you make a legal case against someone in a very determined way, or you put forward a defence when a legal case is made against you. [V n] ⇒ Watkins sued the Army and fought his case in various courts for 10 years. [V n] ⇒ The newspaper is fighting a damages action brought by the actress. 14. uncountable noun Fight is the desire or ability to keep fighting. ⇒ I thought that we had a lot of fight in us. 15. verb If you fight an emotion or desire, you try very hard not to feel it, show it, or act on it, but do not always succeed. [V n] ⇒ I desperately fought the urge to giggle. [V + with] ⇒ He fought with the urge to smoke one of the cigars he'd given up a while ago. [V to-inf] ⇒ He fought to be patient with her.
COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary. Copyright © Harper Collins Publishers