fend

verb
\ ˈfend \
fended; fending; fends

Definition of fend 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : defend

2 : to keep or ward off : repel often used with off fend off an invader

3 dialectal British : to provide for : support

intransitive verb

1 dialectal British : to make an effort : struggle

2a : to try to get along without help : shift had to fend for themselves

b : to provide a livelihood

fend

noun

Definition of fend (Entry 2 of 2)

chiefly Scotland

: an effort or attempt especially for oneself

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Synonyms & Antonyms for fend

Synonyms: Verb

bulwark, cover, defend, fence, forfend, guard, keep, protect, safeguard, screen, secure, shield, ward

Antonyms: Verb

assail, assault, attack

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Examples of fend in a Sentence

Verb

uses self-deprecating humor to fend herself from serious criticism

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In immigration proceedings, children are often left to fend for themselves: One-year-old toddlers have landed in court. Sarah Kinosian, Teen Vogue, "Reunification Proves Complicated for Families Separated at the U.S.-Mexico Border," 14 July 2018 As thousands of migrant children wait in detention centers after being separated from their families, many have been left to fend for themselves and looking out for those who can’t. Karen Mizoguchi, PEOPLE.com, "Migrant Toddler Separated from Family Had to Have Diaper Changed by Other Detained Children," 20 June 2018 Another longtime observer, writer Gail Sheehy, attributes her difficulties with the truth to a defense mechanism honed over years of fending off attacks on her and her husband. Jocelyn Noveck, Town & Country, "Why Is Hillary Clinton Still So Hard to Define?," 25 July 2016 Robbins writes that anthroponeses, or diseases passed from humans to animals, are one concern: Orcas are consistently exposed to airborne pathogens that their immune systems may not equipped to fend off. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "Pacific Northwest Orca Population Hits 30-Year-Low," 10 July 2018 The Enquirer/Cara Owsley Kroger shareholders will be asked Thursday to approvenew company rules about who can be elected tothe board - rules that could be used to fend off activist shareholders such as Nelson Peltz. Alexander Coolidge, Cincinnati.com, "Kroger moves to block activist shareholders. The goal: avoid what Nelson Peltz is doing to P&G and GE," 27 June 2018 Incumbent Sheriff Scott Jones appeared to easily fend off a challenge from Milo Fitch. Phillip Reese, sacbee, "See how every Sacramento neighborhood voted in 2018 primary," 27 June 2018 He, in turn, could be trying to win the people’s support in order to fend off resistance from the party’s old guard and achieve real reform. The Christian Science Monitor, "Is love a winning message for Ethiopia?," 25 June 2018 The machine’s purpose, naturally, was to dispense cash outside of limited operating hours—as well as to fend off union efforts to close bank branches on Saturdays. Carolina A. Miranda, The Atlantic, "The Unbearable Awkwardness of Automation," 13 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And sensitive types should look to Kevin Murphy’s Maxi Wash, a pretreatment that balances your scalp to its ideal 5.5 to 6.5 pH range and fends off any irritation from color sessions. Kari Molvar, Vogue, "The Supercharged Detox Ingredient That’s Missing From Your Shampoo," 14 June 2018 Singletary made three three-pointers in the third quarter, helping fend off a couple different mini runs that Lumberton had. Elliott Lapin, Houston Chronicle, "Byrd's 41 boosts Kingwood Park to opening round playoff win," 13 Feb. 2018 Instead of letting the fish fend for themselves while trying to reach the ocean, they are intercepted and taken to the hatchery at Cherrylane to be reconditioned. Eric Barker, idahostatesman, "About 100 steelhead repeat spawners released on Snake River | Idaho Statesman," 30 Oct. 2017 Instead of letting the fish fend for themselves while trying to reach the ocean, they are intercepted and taken to the hatchery at Cherrylane to be reconditioned. Eric Barker, idahostatesman, "About 100 steelhead repeat spawners released on Snake River | Idaho Statesman," 30 Oct. 2017 Instead of letting the fish fend for themselves while trying to reach the ocean, they are intercepted and taken to the hatchery at Cherrylane to be reconditioned. Eric Barker, idahostatesman, "About 100 steelhead repeat spawners released on Snake River | Idaho Statesman," 30 Oct. 2017 Instead of letting the fish fend for themselves while trying to reach the ocean, they are intercepted and taken to the hatchery at Cherrylane to be reconditioned. Eric Barker, idahostatesman, "About 100 steelhead repeat spawners released on Snake River | Idaho Statesman," 30 Oct. 2017 Instead of letting the fish fend for themselves while trying to reach the ocean, they are intercepted and taken to the hatchery at Cherrylane to be reconditioned. Eric Barker, idahostatesman, "About 100 steelhead repeat spawners released on Snake River | Idaho Statesman," 30 Oct. 2017 Instead of letting the fish fend for themselves while trying to reach the ocean, they are intercepted and taken to the hatchery at Cherrylane to be reconditioned. Eric Barker, idahostatesman, "About 100 steelhead repeat spawners released on Snake River | Idaho Statesman," 30 Oct. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fend.' 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 fend

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1721, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for fend

Verb

Middle English fenden, short for defenden "to defend"

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Learn More about fend

Phrases Related to fend

fend for oneself

fend off

Statistics for fend

Last Updated

25 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fend

The first known use of fend was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for fend

fend

verb
\ ˈfend \
fended; fending

Kids Definition of fend

1 : to drive away or repel I tried to fend off an attack.

2 : to get along without help You'll have to fend for yourself.

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Comments on fend

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