guard

noun
\ ˈgärd How to pronounce guard (audio) \

Definition of guard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one assigned to protect or oversee another: such as
a : a person or a body of persons on sentinel duty Guards were posted around the camp.
b guards plural : troops attached to the person of the sovereign
c British : conductor sense b
2a : a defensive state or attitude asked him out when his guard was down
b : a defensive position (as in boxing)
3a : the act or duty of protecting or defending
b : the state of being protected : protection
4 : a protective or safety device specifically : a device for protecting a machine part or the operator of a machine
5 archaic : precaution
6a : a position or player next to the center in a football line
b : a player stationed in the backcourt in basketball
off guard
: in an unprepared or unsuspecting state Her angry response caught me off guard.
on guard
: defensively watchful : alert is on guard against terrorists

guard

verb
guarded; guarding; guards

Definition of guard (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to protect an edge of with an ornamental border
2a : to protect from danger especially by watchful attention : make secure police guarding our cities
b : to stand at the entrance of as if on guard or as a barrier
c : to tend to carefully : preserve, protect guarded their privacy
3 archaic : escort
4a : to watch over so as to prevent escape, disclosure, or indiscretion guarded the prisoners.
b : to attempt to prevent (an opponent) from playing effectively or scoring

intransitive verb

: to watch by way of caution or defense : stand guard guard against mistakes

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Other Words from guard

Verb

guarder noun

Choose the Right Synonym for guard

Verb

defend, protect, shield, guard, safeguard mean to keep secure from danger or against attack. defend denotes warding off actual or threatened attack. defend the country protect implies the use of something (such as a covering) as a bar to the admission or impact of what may attack or injure. a hard hat to protect your head shield suggests protective intervention in imminent danger or actual attack. shielded her eyes from the sun with her hand guard implies protecting with vigilance and force against expected danger. White House entrances are well guarded safeguard implies taking precautionary protective measures against merely possible danger. our civil liberties must be safeguarded

Examples of guard in a Sentence

Noun

There were dozens of police officers standing guard along the parade route. Tourists gather every day to watch the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. The guard must be in place before operating the meat slicer.

Verb

Two policemen were assigned to guard the prisoner. A tank guarded the bridge from enemy attack. A police officer was stationed outside to guard the door. They jealously guard their secrets. Her whereabouts are a tightly guarded secret.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Because these guards couldn't logistically be with Will and Harry every moment of every day, the boys were required to wear GPS satellite tags so their location would always be known when the security team couldn't physically have eyes on them. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Prince Harry Lost His GPS Tracker as a Kid, Triggering a High Security Alert," 27 Jan. 2019 Sneaking through an entire level without detection became a more important goal than wiping out guards. Lee Hutchinson, Ars Technica, "War Stories: Thief’s intuitive stealth system wasn’t intuitive to design," 2 Dec. 2018 Ex-Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue, the former Lakers guard, already has been frequently mentioned as a potential replacement for Walton due to his obvious ties to James. Greg Beacham, The Seattle Times, "Luke Walton out as Lakers coach after 3 losing seasons," 13 Apr. 2019 Most Read Nation & World Stories The rocket attack, which caught Israel off guard, may have been an attempt by Hamas to divert attention from its growing domestic woes. Fares Akram, The Seattle Times, "Israel, Gaza militants in 2nd day of cross-border fighting," 25 Mar. 2019 Mexican police in 2007 guard a shipment of cocaine allegedly tied to Mr. Guzmán. Nicole Hong, WSJ, "What El Chapo’s Trial Revealed: The Inner Workings of a $14 Billion Drug Empire," 12 Feb. 2019 The whole family is marched into Impatiev House by revolutionary guards, perched on chairs in the center of the room, and shot dead in an almost comically gruesome scene. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "What's the Story With The Romanoffs Controversial Opening Credits?," 27 Oct. 2018 In the kitchen of the house, the guard, Morteja, and an older woman greeted us. Nadia Murad, Glamour, "Nadia Murad Escaped Sexual Slavery at the Hands of ISIS. This Is Her Story.," 5 Oct. 2018 Now, one of those guards, Rosemary Esterholm, is getting her job back. Sarah Mearhoff, Teen Vogue, "A Prison Guard Is Being Rehired After a Scandal Involving a Teen's Suicide Attempt," 18 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

By the morning of the show at the National Portrait Gallery, the look was hung on a rack for Buoso, guarded by a doting dresser. Amanda Brooks, Vogue, "From Sketch to Dress: How Erdem Revived an Italian Principessa in Custom Fil Coupé," 26 Feb. 2019 After loving farewells, the family members separate for the day, the adults to work in the fields guarded by an overseer, the child to play with other youngsters. Meghan Cox Gurdon, WSJ, "Children’s Books: Speaking Plainly About Slavery," 18 Jan. 2019 The cotton fabrics have been fortified with a protective frame that guards against drops and scuffs. Jean Palmieri | Wwd, latimes.com, "Zachary Prell creates iPhone cases from shirt fabrics," 26 June 2018 Often, that’s done by a service called Sift, which is used by startups and established companies alike, including Instacart and LinkedIn, to help guard against credit-card and other forms of fraud. Christopher Mims, WSJ, "The Secret Trust Scores Companies Use to Judge Us All," 6 Apr. 2019 Go for a sturdy leather jacket to guard against wind and try a long skirt instead of jeans to keep with the aesthetic of the charming countryside. Nicola Fumo, Town & Country, "What to Pack for an Irish Getaway," 4 Mar. 2019 This should help guard against extensions that use harmless external code during the initial submission to the store but then later replace that code with something malicious once the extension has been published to the store. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Google taking new steps to prevent malicious Chrome extensions," 2 Oct. 2018 But Republicans at the FCC maintain that existing law is sufficient to guard against misbehavior, even as telecom companies gobble one another up. Anchorage Daily News, "The Web as you know it may soon be altered," 11 June 2018 Critiques of police violence are often tempered by assertions that the police provide a necessary peacekeeping force to guard against crime and ensure that criminals are brought to justice. Mychal Denzel Smith, The New Republic, "How America became over-policed," 5 June 2018

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1500, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for guard

Noun and Verb

Middle English garde, from Anglo-French garde, guarde, warde, from garder, guarder, warder, to guard, defend, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German wartēn to watch, take care — more at ward

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Statistics for guard

Last Updated

9 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for guard

The first known use of guard was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for guard

guard

noun

English Language Learners Definition of guard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a state in which someone is carefully looking for possible danger, threats, problems, etc.
: a person whose job or duty is to watch and protect someone or something
: a group of people (such as soldiers) who protect a person or place

guard

verb

English Language Learners Definition of guard (Entry 2 of 2)

: to watch (someone) in order to prevent escape
: to protect (someone or something) from danger or attack
: to be careful about not telling or talking about (something, such as a secret)

guard

noun
\ ˈgärd How to pronounce guard (audio) \

Kids Definition of guard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person or a body of persons that guards against injury or danger the palace guard
2 : the act or duty of keeping watch An officer stood guard outside.
3 : a device giving protection a mouth guard

guard

verb
guarded; guarding

Kids Definition of guard (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to protect from danger : defend
2 : to watch over so as to prevent escape guard a prisoner
3 : to keep careful watch for in order to prevent I try to guard against mistakes.

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More from Merriam-Webster on guard

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with guard

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for guard

Spanish Central: Translation of guard

Nglish: Translation of guard for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of guard for Arabic Speakers

Comments on guard

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