quarrel

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English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English querele (altercation, dispute; argument, debate; armed combat; trial by combat; basis for dispute, complaint; claim, legal suit; a lament; illness) [and other forms],[1] from Anglo-Norman querele [and other forms] and Middle French querele, querelle (altercation, dispute; basis for dispute; side in a dispute; complaint; accusation; legal suit; lament; problem) (modern French querelle), and from their etymon Latin querēla, querella (dispute; argument; complaint, grievance; legal complaint; lament; illness), from querī + -ēla, -ella (suffix forming nouns).[2] Querī is the present active infinitive of queror (to complain; to bewail, lament; to be indignant), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱwes- (to puff; to sigh).

The word had replaced Old English sacan (basis for dispute) by 1340.

Noun[edit]

quarrel (plural quarrels)

  1. A dispute or heated argument (especially one that is verbal).
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:dispute
    We got into a silly quarrel about what food to order.
    • 1851, Francis, Duc de la Rochefoucauld [i.e., François de La Rochefoucauld], [anonymous], transl., Moral Reflections, Sentences and Maxims of Francis, Duc de la Rochefoucauld. [], New York, N.Y.: William Gowans, OCLC 9452642, number 523, page 140:
      Quarrels would not last long, if the fault was only on one side.
    • 2016 June 17, John O’Sullivan, “U.K. Membership in the European Union”, in C-SPAN[1], 4:34 from the start, archived from the original on 23 December 2020:
      All quarrels halt at the grave.
  2. Often preceded by a form of to have: a basis or ground of dispute or objection; a complaint; also, a feeling or situation of ill will and unhappiness caused by this.
    A few customers in the shop had some quarrels with us, so we called for the manager.
    I have no quarrel with her; it’s her partner whom I dislike.
  3. (rare) A propensity to quarrel; quarrelsomeness.
Alternative forms[edit]
Related terms[edit]
Translations[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle English querelen (to dispute, quarrel; to assert one's claims; to rebel) [and other forms], from querele (noun);[3] see etymology 1. Compare Anglo-Norman, Middle French, and Old French quereler, quereller (to argue with, dispute; to criticize; to bring a legal suit) (modern French quereller (to quarrel, squabble)).[4]

Verb[edit]

quarrel (third-person singular simple present quarrels, present participle (UK) quarrelling or (US) quarreling, simple past and past participle (UK) quarrelled or (US) quarreled)

  1. (intransitive, also figuratively) To argue fiercely; to contend; to squabble; to cease to be on friendly terms, to fall out.
  2. (intransitive) To find fault; to cavil.
    to quarrel with one’s lot
  3. (intransitive, obsolete) Followed by at: to disagree with; to take offence.
  4. (transitive, obsolete except Scotland) To argue or squabble with (someone).
Conjugation[edit]
Alternative forms[edit]
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Etymology 3[edit]

PIE word
*kʷetwóres
A crossbow quarrel (sense 1) or bolt of the 16th or 17th century.

From Middle English quarrel (bolt for an arbalest, crossbow, or siege engine; (figurative) seductive glance, temptation to sin; needle (possibly one square in cross-section); small (perhaps square-shaped) opening in window tracery; a cushion (perhaps square-shaped)) [and other forms],[5] from Anglo-Norman quarel, quarele, quarrel, Middle French quarrel, and Old French quarel, quarrel, carrel (crossbow bolt; floor tile or paving stone (rectangular- or square-shaped); small glass pane for windows) (modern French carreau (crossbow bolt; a tile; windowpane; a square)), from Late Latin quarellus, quadrellus (crossbow bolt; paving stone; a tile), from Latin quadrum (a square; square section; regular shape or form) + -ellus (variant of -ulus (suffix forming diminutive nouns, indicating small size or youth)).[6] Quadrum is ultimately derived from quattuor (four), from Proto-Indo-European *kʷetwóres (four).

Noun[edit]

quarrel (countable and uncountable, plural quarrels)

  1. (countable, archery, historical) An arrow or bolt for a crossbow or an arbalest (a late, large type of crossbow), traditionally with the head square in its cross section.
    Synonyms: carrel (obsolete), quarry
    • 1600, [Torquato Tasso], “The Seuenth Booke of Godfrey of Bulloigne”, in Edward Fairefax [i.e., Edward Fairfax], transl., Godfrey of Bulloigne, or The Recouerie of Ierusalem. [], London: [] Ar[nold] Hatfield, for I[saac] Iaggard and M[atthew] Lownes, OCLC 940138160, stanza 103, page 137:
      Twanged the ſtring, out flew the quarell long, / And through the ſubtile aire did ſinging pas, / It hit the knight the buckles rich among, / Wherewith his pretious girdle faſt'ned was, / It bruſed them and pearſt his hawberke ſtrong, / Some little blood downe trickled on the gras; [...]
    • 1820, Walter Scott, chapter XIV, in Ivanhoe; a Romance. [], volume III, Edinburgh: [] Archibald Constable and Co.; London: Hurst, Robinson, and Co. [], OCLC 230694662, page 281:
      Here be two arblasts, comrade, with windlaces and quarrells—to the barbican with you, and see you drive each bolt through a Saxon brain.
    • 1829 January–July, [Edward Augustus Kendall], “Illustrations of History. Archery.”, in The Olio; or Museum of Entertainment, volume III, London: [] Shackell and Carfrae [for] Joseph Shackell, [], OCLC 985507367, page 174, column 2:
      The small cross-bow, called the arbalet or arbalest, is said to have been invented by the Sicilians. It was carried by the foot-soldiers, and when used was charged with a quarrel or bar-bolt, that is, a small arrow with a flat head, one of which occasioned the death of Harold [Godwinson] at the battle of Hastings, [...]
    • 1891, A[rthur] Conan Doyle, “How the Yellow Cog Fought the Two Rover Galleys”, in The White Company [], volume II, London: Smith, Elder, & Co., [], OCLC https://1152655608, page 71:
      "What was that?" he asked, as a hissing, sharp-drawn voice seemed to whisper in his ear. The steersman smiled, and pointed with his foot to where a short heavy cross-bow quarrel stuck quivering in the boards.
  2. (countable, architecture) A diamond- or square-shaped piece of glass forming part of a lattice window.
    Synonym: quarry
  3. (countable, Northern England, architecture) A square tile; a quarry tile; (uncountable) such tiles collectively.
    Synonym: quarry (archaic)
  4. (countable, obsolete, rare) A cutting tool or chisel with a diamond- or square-shaped end.
  5. (countable, architecture, obsolete) A small square-shaped opening in window tracery.
Related terms[edit]
Translations[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ querē̆le, n.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
  2. ^ quarrel, n.2”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, December 2007.; “quarrel1, n.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–present.
  3. ^ querē̆len, v.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
  4. ^ quarrel, v.”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, December 2007; “quarrel1, v.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–present.
  5. ^ quarrel, n.(1)”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
  6. ^ quarrel, n.1”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, December 2007; “quarry2, n.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–present.

Further reading[edit]