Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

fence

play
noun, often attributive \ˈfen(t)s\

Simple Definition of fence

  • : a structure like a wall built outdoors usually of wood or metal that separates two areas or prevents people or animals from entering or leaving

  • : a person who buys stolen property from thieves and sells it

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of fence

  1. 1 archaic :  a means of protection :  defense

  2. 2 a :  a barrier intended to prevent escape or intrusion or to mark a boundary; especially :  such a barrier made of posts and wire or boards b :  an immaterial barrier or boundary line <on the other side of the fence in the argument>

  3. 3 :  fencing 1

  4. 4 a :  a receiver of stolen goods b :  a place where stolen goods are bought

fenceless play \-ləs\ adjective
fencelessness noun
on the fence
  1. :  in a position of neutrality or indecision

Examples of fence in a sentence

  1. We put up a fence around our yard.

  2. <the only way to prevent motorists from trying to use that unsafe bridge is to put a fence across the road leading to it>



Origin of fence

Middle English fens, short for defens defense


First Known Use: 14th century

Other Combat Sports Terms


2

fence

verb,

Simple Definition of fence

  • : to put a fence around (a place or area)

  • : to keep (something or someone) in or out with a fence

  • : to fight with swords : to practice the art or sport of fencing

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of fence

fencedfencing

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to enclose with a fence b (1) :  to keep in or out with a fence (2) :  to ward off

  3. 2 :  to provide a defense for

  4. 3 :  to sell (stolen property) to a fence

  5. intransitive verb
  6. 1 a :  to practice fencing b (1) :  to use tactics of attack and defense resembling those of fencing (2) :  to parry arguments by shifting ground

  7. 2 archaic :  to provide protection

fencer noun

Examples of fence in a sentence

  1. a house with a fenced-in yard

  2. He stole watches and fenced them on the street.



15th Century

First Known Use of fence

15th century

Rhymes with fence



FENCE Defined for Kids

1

fence

play
noun \ˈfens\

Definition of fence for Students

  1. :  a barrier (as of wood or wire) to prevent escape or entry or to mark a boundary




2

fence

play
verb

Definition of fence for Students

fencedfencing

  1. 1 :  to enclose with a fence <fence a yard>

  2. 2 :  to fight with swords :  to practice the sport of fencing

fencer noun



Law Dictionary

1

fence

noun

Legal Definition of fence

  1. 1 :  a barrier intended to prevent escape or intrusion or to mark a boundary

  2. 2a :  a receiver of stolen goods b :  a place where stolen goods are bought




2

fence

transitive verb

Legal Definition of fence

fencedfencing

  1. 1a :  to enclose with a fence b :  to keep in or out with a fence

  2. 2 :  to sell (stolen property) to a fence





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up fence? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a timid, meek, or unassertive person

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alt-5746713d76276

Which of these is a synonym of nonplus?

soothe perplex disapprove reduce
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ