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From Middle English hostilitie, hostilite, from Old French hostilité, from Latin hostīlitās.



hostility (countable and uncountable, plural hostilities)

  1. (uncountable) The state of being hostile.
    My resentment and anger towards you caused hostility and a division between us.
    • 1603, Michel de Montaigne, chapter 12, in John Florio, transl., The Essayes [], book II, London: [] Val[entine] Simmes for Edward Blount [], →OCLC:
      There is no hostilitie so excellent, as that which is absolutely Christian.
    • 2011 October 1, Phil McNulty, “Everton 0-2 Liverpool”, in BBC Sport:
      But with Goodison Park openly directing its full hostility towards Atkinson, Liverpool went ahead when Carroll turned in his first Premier League goal of the season after 70 minutes.
    • 2013 September 28, Kenan Malik, “London Is Special, but Not That Special”, in New York Times, retrieved 28 September 2013:
      The polarization of wealth and the polarization of attitudes to diversity are not unrelated. A key reason for popular hostility to immigrants is that to many people, particularly within working-class communities, immigration has become a symbol of unacceptable change.
  2. (countable) A hostile action, especially a military action. See hostilities for specific plural definition.



  • (antonym(s) of state of being hostile): amity, friendliness
  • (antonym(s) of military action): peace

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