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

News, Justin told her to leave and she was escorted out by his body guards. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Justin Bieber's Craziest Stalker Stories," 27 Mar. 2019 Among their agreements over the past year was a pledge to withdraw front-line guard posts in the DMZ. Andrew Jeong, WSJ, "Old Enemies Meet Again on the Battlefield, This Time to Recover the Dead," 12 Feb. 2019 Royal gardens, peeling frescoes, and tiled mosaics are breathtaking in their beauty, but the zenith of any visit is a wander through the sultan’s harem, once home to hundreds of concubines and their eunuch guards. Ashlea Halpern, Condé Nast Traveler, "Three Days In Istanbul," 28 Dec. 2018 This is akin to removing your sentries from guard posts on military compounds. Emily Stewart, Vox, "The Trump administration is dismantling financial protections for the military," 14 Aug. 2018 Inside the cave, sealed off from the camp by armed guards, the boys and their coach remain agonizingly far from safety, separated from the entrance by pitch-dark tunnels studded by stalactites and full of sharp turns and changes in elevation. NBC News, "Soccer team trapped in Thailand: Weather key to rescue operations as mood turns somber," 6 July 2018 A few of them manage to slip their sled between the hay bales and – BOOM – run into the guard rails. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: USA Luge's search for next great Winter Olympian visits Indianapolis," 28 June 2018 The board's blessing gives the district the green light to start advertising to hire about 80 armed guards to be placed mostly in elementary schools. Colleen Wright, miamiherald, "With little time and cash, Broward to hire armed guards instead of police at schools," 27 June 2018 Later that evening, at a gated house watched over by armed guards, the reality of the situation sank in. Brian Goldstone, The New Republic, "Essential reporting, interpretation, and opinion on politics and culture. Don't miss our latest.," 26 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Facial recognition scanners guard the entrances to housing complexes. Paul Mozur, New York Times, "Inside China’s Dystopian Dreams: A.I., Shame and Lots of Cameras," 8 July 2018 In four seasons at Charlotte, former 49ers guard Byron Dinkins averaged 15.5 points and 4.8 assists. David Scott, charlotteobserver, "How ex-star Byron Dinkins’ hiring links past to present for Charlotte 49ers," 8 June 2018 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

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

6 Jun 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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