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Challenge

Challenge

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challenged; challenging

transitive verb

1 : to dispute especially as being unjust, invalid, or outmoded : impugn
  • new data that challenges old assumptions
2 a : to confront or defy boldly : dare
  • he challenged his critics to prove his guilt
b : to call out to duel or combat
  • challenged his rival to a duel
c : to invite into competition
  • he challenged his brother to a tennis match
3 : to question formally the legality or legal qualifications of
  • challenge a juror
4 : to arouse or stimulate especially by presenting with difficulties
  • she wants a job that will challenge her
5 : to order to halt and prove identity
  • the sentry challenged the stranger
6 : to demand as due or deserved : require
  • an event that challenges explanation

7 : to administer a physiological (see physiological 2) and especially an immunologic challenge to (an organism or cell)

intransitive verb

1 : to make or present a challenge
  • when the appropriate moment challenged, he was capable of … leadership
  • —C. H. Driver

2 : to take legal exception

challenger

noun

challengeable

play \ˈcha-lən-jə-bəl\ adjective

Examples of challenge in a Sentence

  1. A number of doctors are challenging the study's claims.

  2. The new lawsuit challenges the lower court's decision.

  3. She's been challenged on her handling of the problem.

  4. None of them were willing to challenge the referee on the call.

  5. It's a game that will challenge a child's imagination.

  6. The work doesn't challenge him anymore, and he's often bored.

Recent Examples of challenge from the Web

  • This will be challenging and will fatigue the outer hip muscles, says Mansour.

    — jenny mccoy, SELF, "A Quick Equipment-Free Butt Workout From Celebrity Trainer Erin Oprea," 27 June 2018

  • From the towel gliders, to the towel tugs, this challenging upper body workout will leave you sore for days — and deliver serious results.

    — anna kaiser, Time, "How to Seriously Tone Your Arms With Just a Bath Towel," 26 June 2018

  • The state of Hawaii, three of its residents, and a Muslim-American group challenged the new restrictions, and a federal judge blocked enforcement.

    — NBC News, "Supreme Court upholds Trump travel ban," 26 June 2018

  • That lawsuit, which challenged the law on constitutional grounds, was later joined with a separate case brought by the American Civil Liberties Union in last week’s decision.

    — bryan lowry, kansascity, "‘It takes five minutes or less.’ Court ruling means new Kansas voters sign up easily," 25 June 2018

  • The win over the Minnesota Twins began a challenging stretch of 17 of their first 23 games against the American League's five playoff teams from a season ago.

    — jon meoli, baltimoresun.com, "How did this happen? Orioles players examine why this season spun out of control," 24 June 2018

  • Also challenging Erdogan was 61-year-old former Interior Minister Meral Aksener (7.4 percent), the only female presidential candidate in the race.

    — samuel chamberlain, Fox News, "Turkey President Erdogan holds big lead in elections," 24 June 2018

  • Along the way, the Indians (29-5) — who shared the Duneland Athletic Conference title with Crown Point as part of a challenging regular-season schedule — navigated a perilous postseason path.

    — michael osipoff, Post-Tribune, "Lake Central's Jeff Sherman is the 2018 Post-Tribune Softball Coach of the Year," 23 June 2018

  • Balance problems are common in people with autism, and can make daily skills such as dressing challenging.

    — sarah deweerdt, Science | AAAS, "Can science-based video games help kids with autism?," 22 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'challenge.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of challenge

Middle English chalengen to accuse, from Anglo-French chalenger, from Latin calumniari to accuse falsely, from calumnia calumny

challenge Synonyms

Near Antonyms

back, defend, support;

advocate, champion, promote;

abide, endure, stomach, tolerate;

Related Words

doubt, mistrust;

kick (about), object (to), protest;

combat, fight, oppose, resist;

Phrases

call in question (or into);

2

challenge

noun

1 : a stimulating task or problem
  • looking for new challenges
2 a : a calling to account or into question : protest
  • a challenge to unauthorized use of public funds
b : an exception taken to a juror before the juror is sworn
  • a challenge of a prospective juror based on a specific cause or reason

c : a questioning of the right or validity of a vote or voter

d : a sentry's command to halt and prove identity
  • The intruder fled at the sentry's challenge.
3 a : an invitation to compete in a sport
  • He accepted my challenge to a game of chess.

b : a summons (see 1summons 2) that is often threatening, provocative, stimulating, or inciting; specifically : a summons to a duel to answer an affront

4 : the act or process of provoking or testing physiological activity by exposure to a specific substance; especially : a test of immunity by exposure to an antigen

Examples of challenge in a Sentence

  1. The next major challenge for the company is to improve its distribution capabilities.

  2. Teaching adolescents can be quite a challenge.

  3. The band feels ready for new challenges.

  4. If he takes on the new project he will face the greatest challenge of his career.

  5. Management is seeking ways to better meet the challenge of future growth.

  6. The ski slope offers a high degree of challenge.

  7. Do you accept my challenge to a game of chess?

  8. The senator may face a challenge from within her own party.

Recent Examples of challenge from the Web

  • For a bachelorette party, a challenge might be to create an updo for the bride-to-be with only supplies in the room.

    — diane mastrull, Philly.com, "No batteries required: These entrepreneurs are banking on a market for no-tech fun," 28 June 2018

  • Three years ago, the justices had before them an identical free-speech challenge to union fees brought by Rebecca Friedrichs, a California teacher.

    — david g. savage, latimes.com, "Supreme Court deals sharp defeat to public employee unions, banning mandatory fees," 27 June 2018

  • For the first time in his career, Kennedy sided in favor of affirmative action in a 2016 case in which the Court rejected a challenge to a race-conscious admissions program at the University of Texas at Austin.

    — kathryn watson, CBS News, "Historic cases decided by Justice Kennedy," 27 June 2018

  • That would require quite a challenge to the doctrine of stare decisis, or the binding nature of constitutional precedents, which becomes more important as such precedents are allowed to stand.

    — ed kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "Steps the Next Supreme Court Might Take to Roll Back Abortion Rights," 27 June 2018

  • By Kelsey Grey Winning strategies Jordan's challenge is steep: Idahoans have not elected a Democrat as governor since Cecil Andrus in 1990.

    — nate poppino, idahostatesman, "More than Oliver North: 3 things to watch for as Idaho Dems, GOP meet this week," 27 June 2018

  • Before a justice even would have the chance to stun the courtroom, however, the court has to resolve two cases, including an important challenge to the financial health of labor unions that represent government workers.

    — mark sherman, The Seattle Times, "2 cases _ and anyone’s guess _ left in Supreme Court term," 26 June 2018

  • The court’s ruling came on a challenge to the third version of the travel ban, which Trump issued in September 2017.

    — sara reardon, Scientific American, "Top U.S. Court Upholds Trump Travel Ban: Student Visas Already in Decline," 26 June 2018

  • Having multiple companies attempting to lend a hand could also pose a challenge.

    — john moore, National Geographic, "Could DNA Testing Reunite Immigrant Families? Get the Facts.," 25 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'challenge.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of challenge

see 1challenge

challenge Synonyms

Related Words

issue, question;

corner, fix, hole, hot water, jam, mire, pickle, predicament, quagmire, spot;

crux, toughie (also toughy);

dilemma, quandary;

catch, glitch, hitch, pitfall, snag;

conundrum, enigma, mystery, puzzle, puzzlement, riddle;

brainteaser, poser, stumper;

Phrases Related to CHALLENGE

CHALLENGE Defined for English Language Learners

verb

  • : to say or show that (something) may not be true, correct, or legal

  • : to question the action or authority of (someone)

  • law : to question whether (someone) should serve on a jury

noun

  • : a difficult task or problem : something that is hard to do

  • : an action, statement, etc., that is against something : a refusal to accept something as true, correct, or legal

  • : an invitation to compete in a game, fight, etc.

CHALLENGE Defined for Kids

1

challenge

verb chal·lenge \ ˈcha-lənj \

challenged; challenging 1 : to object to as bad or incorrect : dispute
  • The coach challenged the referee's call.
2 : to confront or defy boldly
  • He challenged them to prove him wrong.
3 : to invite or dare to take part in a contest
  • Are you challenging us to a race?
4 : to be difficult enough to be interesting to : test the skill or ability of
  • This puzzle will challenge you.
5 : to halt and demand identification from
  • The guard challenged the stranger.

challenger

noun

2

challenge

noun

1 : an objection to something as not being true, genuine, correct, or proper or to a person (as a juror) as not being correct, qualified, or approved

2 : a call or dare for someone to compete in a contest or sport

3 : a difficult task or problem
  • Memorizing the poem was a challenge.

4 : an order to stop and provide identification

Medical Dictionary

1

challenge

transitive verb chal·lenge \ ˈchal-ənj \

challenged; challenging

: to administer a physiological and especially an immunologic challenge to (an organism or cell)

2

challenge

noun

: the process of provoking or testing physiological activity by exposure to a specific substance; especially : a test of immunity by exposure to an antigen after immunization against it

Law Dictionary

1

challenge

transitive verb chal·lenge

challenged; challenging 1 : to dispute especially as being invalid or unjust
  • counsel challenged this interpretation
2 : to question formally (as by a suit or motion) the legality or legal qualifications of
  • challenge the regulations
; especially : to make a challenge to (a trier of fact)
  • the grounds for challenging prospective jurors
  • —W. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr.
— compare recuse

2

challenge

noun

1 : a calling into question; especially : a questioning of validity or legality : objection
  • when the challenge to the statute is in effect a challenge of this basic assumption
  • Kramer v. Union Free School Dist. No. 15, 395 U.S. 621 (1969)
— see also batson challenge 2 : a request to disqualify a trier of fact (as a jury member or judge) — compare recusal, strike — challenge for cause

: a challenge especially of a prospective juror based on a specific and stated cause or reason

challenge to the array

: a challenge of an entire jury that raises objections to the selection process

peremptory challenge

: a challenge especially of a prospective juror that does not require a stated cause or reason

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