The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Controversy \Con"tro*ver`sy\, n.; pl. Controversies. [L.
controversia, fr. controversus turned against, disputed;
contro- = contra + versus, p. p. of vertere to turn. See
1. Contention; dispute; debate; discussion; agitation of
This left no room for controversy about the title.
A dispute is commonly oral, and a controversy in
2. Quarrel; strife; cause of variance; difference.
The Lord hath a controversy with the nations. --Jer.
3. A suit in law or equity; a question of right. [Obs.]
When any man that had a controversy came to the king
for judgment. --2 Sam. xv.
Syn: Dispute; debate; disputation; disagreement; altercation;
contention; wrangle; strife; quarrel.