verb with·stand \with-ˈstand, with-\

: to not be harmed or affected by (something)

: to deal with (something, such as an attack or criticism) successfully


Full Definition of WITHSTAND

transitive verb
a :  to stand up against :  oppose with firm determination; especially :  to resist successfully
b :  to be proof against :  resist the effect of <withstand the impact of a landing — Current Biography>
archaic :  to stop or obstruct the course of

Examples of WITHSTAND

  1. cookware that can withstand high temperatures
  2. I couldn't withstand the rigors of army life.
  3. They withstood attacks from many critics.


Middle English, from Old English withstandan, from with against + standan to stand
First Known Use: before 12th century

Synonym Discussion of WITHSTAND

oppose, combat, resist, withstand mean to set oneself against someone or something. oppose can apply to any conflict, from mere objection to bitter hostility or warfare <opposed the plan>. combat stresses the forceful or urgent countering of something <combat disease>. resist implies an overt recognition of a hostile or threatening force and a positive effort to counteract or repel it <resisting temptation>. withstand suggests a more passive resistance <trying to withstand peer pressure>.
WITHSTANDING Defined for Kids


verb with·stand \with-ˈstand, with-\
with·stood \-ˈstd\with·stand·ing

Definition of WITHSTAND for Kids

:  to hold out against <This house is able to withstand the worst weather.>
:  to oppose (as an attack) successfully


Next Word in the Dictionary: withstanderPrevious Word in the Dictionary: with prejudiceAll Words Near: withstand
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears