Sword fighters thrust and parry. To thrust is to try to stab, and to parry is to avoid getting stabbed by blocking a thrust. Though it comes from fencing, parry is also handy in dodgeball and awkward conversations

The word parry means to block or evade a movement, like in fencing, but it can also refer to an evasion that is verbal rather than physical. If someone asks you who you have a crush on, but you don’t want to answer, parry the question — change the subject or ask a question in return. When used in this way parry retains its sense of defending yourself through evasion.

Definitions of parry
  1. verb
    impede the movement of (an opponent or a ball)
    synonyms: block, deflect
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    type of:
    fight with sword-like foils
  2. verb
    avoid or try to avoid fulfilling, answering, or performing (duties, questions, or issues)
    synonyms: circumvent, dodge, duck, elude, evade, fudge, hedge, put off, sidestep, skirt
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    beg, beg the question
    dodge, avoid answering, or take for granted
    evade the truth of a point or question by raising irrelevant objections
    type of:
    stay clear from; keep away from; keep out of the way of someone or something
  3. noun
    (fencing) blocking a lunge or deflecting it with a circular motion of the sword
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    type of:
    block, blocking
    the act of obstructing or deflecting someone's movements
  4. noun
    a return punch (especially by a boxer)
    synonyms: counter, counterpunch
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    type of:
    biff, clout, lick, poke, punch, slug
    (boxing) a blow with the fist
Word Family

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