de·​fang | \ (ˌ)dē-ˈfaŋ How to pronounce defang (audio) \
defanged; defanging; defangs

Definition of defang

transitive verb

: to make harmless or less powerful

Examples of defang in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Some have also pitched ideas to potentially defang a conservative-leaning Supreme Court or to bypass Congress to pursue more of their agenda through executive action. NBC News, "5 policy fights that have defined the Democratic presidential race so far," 2 Feb. 2020 By emphasising the overlapping dual allegiances—to tribe and to clan—Deganawida complicated the notions of us and them, defanging the intertribal warfare. The Economist, "Does your brain care about other people? It depends," 4 Nov. 2019 Yet Nabt Fenjan was far from the only Saudi establishment to discreetly drop separate sections over the last few years, after the crown prince defanged the religious police, which once enforced conservative social norms. Vivian Yee, New York Times, "Saudi Society Is Changing. Just Take a Look at These Coffeehouses.," 15 Jan. 2020 Meanwhile, one of those regulatory bodies remains defanged. Cat Zakrzewski, Washington Post, "The Technology 202: Senators grill agency officials over infighting in push to regulate big tech," 18 Sep. 2019 On Thursday, Indian officials issued a statement that tried to defang the rising criticism of the citizenship measures., "In Bangalore, Ramachandra Guha, a preeminent biographer of Mohandas Gandhi and a critic of the citizenship law, was midsentence in speaking to a reporter when helmeted police officers carrying sticks grabbed his arms and dragged him away. It was all captured on video.," 20 Dec. 2019 How gratifying to see the Caesar returned to its artery-clogging ferocity after decades of being defanged by health-conscious Americans. Rand Richards Cooper,, "Review: Chandler Steakhouse at MGM in Springfield is a classic, with modern twists," 4 Oct. 2019 Maximal outcomes like Trump’s move to defang federal regulation of methane emissions ultimately beget maximal responses. Liam Denning | Bloomberg, Washington Post, "Democrat Town Halls Show the Climate’s Changed Already," 5 Sep. 2019 In terms of the metal that one comes across from Scandinavia and other Nordic countries, Sonata Arctica is sort of defanged and approachable. John Adamian,, "Sonata Arctica playing Webster Theater in Hartford," 11 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'defang.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of defang

1919, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of defang was in 1919

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Last Updated

19 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Defang.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2020.

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