SKIP TO CONTENT

martial

An adjective referring to the military, the word martial adds a warlike tone to any noun it describes.

The word martial derives from Mars, the Roman god of war. It refers to almost much anything military, including "martial law," in which the government orders the military to administer the law. The word definitely makes one think of fighting, as in the physical discipline known as the martial arts. But there is a lighter side to the word, too. Martial music, usually associated with the military, is usually bright and inspiring.

Definitions of martial
  1. adjective
    suggesting war or military life
    synonyms: warlike
    military
    characteristic of or associated with soldiers or the military
  2. adjective
    of or relating to the armed forces
    martial law”
    Synonyms:
    military
    associated with or performed by members of the armed services as contrasted with civilians
  3. adjective
    (of persons) befitting a warrior
    synonyms: soldierlike, soldierly, warriorlike
    military
    characteristic of or associated with soldiers or the military
Commonly confused words

marital / martial

Marital and martial look almost alike, but the only time they overlap is when you declare war on your spouse. Marital has to do with marriage, and martial is concerned with fighting.

Continue reading...

Word Family
EDITOR’S CHOICE

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.

SAT/PSAT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

TOEFL

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

ACT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week