(Greek: struggle, a contest, to contend for a prize; also, to lead, set in motion, drive, conduct, guide, govern; to do, to act; by extension, pain)

agon (s) (noun), agons (pl)
1. Any of various competitions (athletic, literary, etc.) for prizes at ancient Greek games.
2. The conflict of characters, as in classical Greek dramas or stories: "Agons now refer to actions that take place between protagonists and antagonists in works of literature and dramatic presentations."
agonal (noun), more agonal, most agonal
1. Associated or connected with the great pain of dying.
2. Relating to the process of dying or the moment of death, so called because of the former erroneous notion that dying is a painful process.
agonarch (s) (noun), agonarchs (pl)
A judge or overseer in competitions, activities, or contests.
agonic (adjective), more agonic, most agonic
Characteristic of not forming an angle; having no angle: The line indicating the perimeter of a circle is an agonic line.
agonious (adjective), more agonious, most agonious
1. Conveying a violent contest or striving for an objective.
2. Pain which is so extreme as to cause contortions of the body; such as, those which were made in athletic contests in Greece: Sometimes there are agonious pains of the mind and/or body that can result from a person's excessive striving to accomplish something.
agonism (s) (noun), agonisms (pl)
A contention or struggle for a prize in a contest; especially, in the ancient Grecian athletic games.
agonist (s) (noun), agonists (pl)
1. In physiology, a muscle whose contraction is directly responsible for the movement of a part of the body.
2. A contender for prizes in competitions.
3. A person who is engaged in a contest or struggle; such as, a protagonist in a drama or a story.
agonistarch (s) (noun), agonistarchs (pl)
1. A person who trained combatants for the Greek Olympic games.
2. Etymology: from Greek agonistes, "combatant" + -arch, "a ruler, a commander".
agonistic (adjective), more agonistic, most agonistic
1. Pertaining to athletic contests; especially, those that were held in ancient Greece: The ancient Olympics were actually called "agones", or struggles to achieve glory; so, they had several agonistic competitions in a variety of sports events.
2. A reference to a combative argument or fight: If a person believes it is impossible to know whether or not God exists, and if there is a disagreement with a believer in God, there could be a very strong agonistic disagreement between the two.

These days, so many countries are having agonistic disputes with political opponents and even with the leaders of their own countries to such an extent, that many of them end up causing terrible destruction and deaths, as has been shown recently in Syria and Egypt.

Combative or belligerent.
© ALL rights are reserved.

Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.

1. The science of athletic combats or contests in public games.
2. The art of combat or competitions in atheletic games.
agonize (verb), agonizes; agonized; agonizing
1. To make convulsive efforts; to struggle; to strive in physical exercise: The hikers were agonising in the hot sun as they were climbing up the high mountain.
2. To be in agony; to be in great pain: Susan agonized over the difficult decision that had to be made before making the final phone call.

Cross references of word families related directly, or indirectly, to: "master, lead, leading, ruler, ruling, govern": -agogic; arch-; -crat; dom-; gov-; magist-; poten-; regi-; tyran-.