fend

verb
\ ˈfend How to pronounce fend (audio) \
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

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for fend

Synonyms: Verb

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

Antonyms: Verb

assail, assault, attack

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of fend in a Sentence

Verb

uses self-deprecating humor to fend herself from serious criticism

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The company behind the BBP, Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), is the same company responsible for the DAPL, which had police violently fend off peaceful Water Protectors at Standing Rock in 2017. Mary Lovell, Teen Vogue, "Bayou Bridge Pipeline Meets Resistance from the L’eau Est La Vie Camp," 16 Oct. 2018 Bayern Munich are reportedly prepared to fend off interest in Renato Sanches in order to keep the young Portuguese midfielder at the club next season, following a disastrous loan spell in the Premier League with Swansea City. SI.com, "Bayern Munich Set to Keep Renato Sanches at the Club Next Season Despite Loan Request From Benfica," 7 June 2018 Isla Nublar now sits abandoned by humans while the surviving dinosaurs fend for themselves in the jungles. azcentral, "Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Advanced Screening," 25 May 2018 Rescued as a cub after his mama was tragically shot, Boo was too young to fend for himself in the wild; however, the refuge took him in and has cared for him ever since, providing him with ample space to roam, play, and feed. Sunset, "5 Reasons Golden, B.C. Is a Summertime Must," 22 Jan. 2018 And if this were the case, my body’s inability to fend for itself would not have been the result of poor medical treatment. Lorena Avilés Trujillo, Glamour, "I Have a Brain Aneurysm—I Call Her Annie," 1 Apr. 2019 Either Kelly Bryant steps up his game to fend off true freshman Trevor Lawrence or Lawrence proves too talented to keep out of the lineup. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, "ACC power rankings: Clemson leads the way," 25 June 2018 There’s room to improve the trading relationship, such as pressing the EU to lift Europe’s protectionism against American food exports and fending off spurious European tax grabs against American companies. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Crash on the Autobahn," 22 Feb. 2019 Remarkably, the man used nothing but his bare hands to fend off the animal's deadly advances. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "A Runner Strangled a Mountain Lion After It Attacked Him," 5 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Instagram will soon account for a sizable part of owner Facebook’s revenue growth, and also keeps Facebook connected to younger people online while helping fend off a potential threat from rival Snapchat. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Inside the $21 billion market to track your every move," 11 Dec. 2018 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

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.

See More

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"

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about fend

Statistics for fend

Last Updated

24 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fend

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for fend

fend

verb
\ ˈfend How to pronounce fend (audio) \
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.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on fend

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fend

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fend

Spanish Central: Translation of fend

Nglish: Translation of fend for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fend for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fend

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

WORD OF THE DAY

something valued as if it were money

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!