defend

Defend has different shades of meaning, but it always has the sense of protecting something — your ideas, for instance, or your title as world heavyweight champion.

If you order the blood sausage and lamb when you're out to eat with your vegan friends, you may have to defend your eating habits, meaning speak up in support of your choices. Defend can also be something more concrete, like when you defend your property or your country. The lawyer who represents someone accused of a crime is there to defend the accused person — who is called the defendant — and to argue his case in court.

Definitions of defend
1

v protect against a challenge or attack

Synonyms:
guard, hold
hold
take and maintain control over, often by violent means
Type of:
protect
shield from danger, injury, destruction, or damage

v protect or fight for as a champion

Synonyms:
champion
Type of:
back, endorse, indorse, plump for, plunk for, support
be behind; approve of

v fight against or resist strongly

Synonyms:
fight, fight back, fight down, oppose
Types:
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recalcitrate
show strong objection or repugnance; manifest vigorous opposition or resistance; be obstinately disobedient
fend, resist, stand
withstand the force of something
hold out, resist, stand firm, withstand
stand up or offer resistance to somebody or something
drive back, fight off, rebuff, repel, repulse
force or drive back
stand out
be stubborn in resolution or resistance
stand up
refuse to back down; remain solid under criticism or attack
outbrave
resist bravely
hold off
resist and fight to a standoff
remain firm, stand
hold one's ground; maintain a position; be steadfast or upright
defy, hold, hold up, withstand
resist or confront with resistance
Type of:
contend, fight, struggle
be engaged in a fight; carry on a fight

v be on the defensive; act against an attack

Antonyms:
assail, attack
launch an attack or assault on; begin hostilities or start warfare with
aggress, attack
take the initiative and go on the offensive
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Types:
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bulwark
defend with a bulwark
protect
shield from danger, injury, destruction, or damage
ward off
avert, turn away, or repel
arrest, check, contain, hold back, stop, turn back
hold back, as of a danger or an enemy; check the expansion or influence of
cover for
provide an excuse or alibi for someone so as to cover up guilt
cut down, cut out
intercept (a player)
immunise, immunize
law: grant immunity from prosecution
overprotect
protect excessively
look out
to protect someone's interests
cover
hold within range of an aimed firearm
guard, ward
watch over or shield from danger or harm; protect
guard, hold
protect against a challenge or attack
screen, shield
protect, hide, or conceal from danger or harm
charm
protect through supernatural powers or charms
fence, fence in, palisade, surround, wall
surround with a wall in order to fortify
safeguard
make safe
cover
protect or defend (a position in a game)
cover
be responsible for guarding an opponent in a game
mothproof
protect from moths
body guard
accompany and protect from physical harm
insure
take out insurance for
cover
to take an action to protect against future problems
keep, preserve
maintain in safety from injury, harm, or danger
Type of:
keep, prevent
stop (someone or something) from doing something or being in a certain state

v argue or speak in defense of

Synonyms:
fend for, support
Types:
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apologise, apologize, excuse, justify, rationalise, rationalize
defend, explain, clear away, or make excuses for by reasoning
stand up, stick up
defend against attack or criticism
uphold
stand up for; stick up for; of causes, principles, or ideals
color, colour, gloss
give a deceptive explanation or excuse for
plead
offer as an excuse or plea
extenuate, mitigate, palliate
lessen or to try to lessen the seriousness or extent of
Type of:
argue, reason
present reasons and arguments

v state or assert

Synonyms:
maintain
Types:
vindicate
maintain, uphold, or defend
Type of:
affirm
say yes to

v be the defense counsel for someone in a trial

Synonyms:
represent
Antonyms:
prosecute
bring a criminal action against (in a trial)

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