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definition of the word debate

by the Wiktionnary

From Old French debatre (to fight, contend, debate, also literarlly to beat down), from Romanic desbattere, from Latin dis- (apart, in different directions) + batuere (to beat, to fence).

Singular
debate

Plural
countable and uncountable; plural debates

debate (countable and uncountable; plural debates)

  1. An argument, or discussion, usually in an ordered or formal setting, often with more than two people, generally ending with a vote or other decision.
    After a four-hour debate, the committee voted to table the motion.
  2. An informal and spirited but generally civil discussion of opposing views.
    The debate over the age of the universe is thousands of years old.
    There was a bit of a debate over who should pay for the damaged fence.
  3. (uncountable) Discussion of opposing views.
    There has been considerable debate concerning exactly how to format these articles.
  4. (Frequently in French form débat) a type of literary composition, taking the form of a discussion or disputation, commonly found in the vernacular medieval poetry of many European countries, as well as in medieval Latin.

Definition from Wiktionary
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