A battle is a combat in warfare between two or more armed forces, or combatants. A war usually consists of multiple battles. Battles generally are well defined in duration, area, and force commitment. A battle with only limited engagement between the forces and without decisive results is sometimes called a skirmish.
Battle is a loanword from the Old Frenchbataille, first attested in 1297, from Late Latinbattualia, meaning "exercise of soldiers and gladiators in fighting and fencing", from Late Latin (taken from Germanic) battuere "beat", from which the English word battery is also derived via Middle Englishbatri.