Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

challenge

 - definition
 
 
 
Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary entries. Click on the T button in an entry to review the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
noun British English pronunciation: challenge /ˈtʃælɪndʒ/ 
Word Forms
Close
singularchallenge
pluralchallenges

Related dictionary definitions

  1. 1
    [countable/uncountable] something that needs a lot of skill, energy, and determination to deal with or achieve, especially something you have never done before and will enjoy doing

    I was bored with my job and felt I needed a new challenge.

    meet a challenge (=deal with it successfully):

    Are western nations ready to meet the enormous environmental challenges that lie ahead?

    challenge of:

    We were all keen walkers, and enjoyed the challenge of this remote place.

    the challenge is to do something:

    The challenge for policy-makers is to achieve economic growth without damaging the environment.

    face a challenge (=have to deal with one):

    The new government faces the daunting challenge of completing the building on time.

  2. 2
    [countable] an action or idea that questions whether something is true, accurate, or legal

    He began a legal challenge to clear his name.

    challenge to:

    There seems to be no significant challenge to the party's free-market ideology.

    pose/present a challenge to something:

    Recent discoveries pose a serious challenge to accepted views on the age of the universe.

    1. a.
      a refusal to accept someone's authority
      challenge to:

      The strike was seen as a direct challenge to the authority of the government.

      mount a challenge (=make one):

      They have failed to mount a serious challenge to the existing leadership.

  3. 3
    [countable] an invitation to someone to compete or fight, especially in sport
    challenge for:

    Federer returned to make a major challenge for the Wimbledon title.

    issue a challenge:

    One of the men issued the challenge, 'I'll take on any two of you.'

    1. a.
      [singular] used in the names of competitions, especially sports competitions

      one of the golfers competing in the Million Dollar Challenge

Word of the Day

resurrection

the occasion on which Jesus Christ was brought back to life after his death, according to the Bible

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog