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1. The act of defending against attack, danger, or injury.
2. A means or method of defending or protecting.
3. Sports The act or an instance of defending a championship against a challenger: will box in his third defense of his title.
4. An argument in support or justification of something. See Synonyms at apology.
5. Law
a. The act of defending a case.
b. A fact or law that provides a full or partial exoneration of the defendant against the charges or claims made in a lawsuit or prosecution.
c. The defendant and his or her legal counsel.
6. The science or art of defending oneself; self-defense.
7. (often dē′fĕns′) Sports
a. The means or tactics used in trying to stop the opposition from scoring.
b. The team or those players on the team attempting to stop the opposition from scoring.
c. Defending ability or potential.
8. The military, governmental, and industrial complex, especially as it authorizes and manages weaponry production.
tr.v. de·fensed, de·fens·ing, de·fens·es Sports
1. To attempt to stop (the opposition) from scoring.
2. To play defense against (an opponent or play).

[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin dēfēnsa, from feminine past participle of dēfendere, to ward off; see defend.]

de·fense′less adj.
de·fense′less·ly adv.
de·fense′less·ness n.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.defenselessness - the property of being helpless in the face of attackdefenselessness - the property of being helpless in the face of attack
vulnerability - susceptibility to injury or attack
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
A cry of unspeakable gladness broke from her lips, only to die in terror as she saw the utter defenselessness of her mate, and realized that the lion had recovered himself and was turning upon Tarzan in mad lust for vengeance.
As it was, the very defenselessness of her situation gave her, in my opinion, the right to expect from me even the absurdest sacrifices to the narrowest conventionalities.
THE most striking spectacle presented to a stranger by the shores of Suffolk is the extraordinary defenselessness of the land against the encroachments of the sea.
The current tensions in the Persian Gulf certainly invoke memories of the tense days of the war and the country's defenselessness against powerful enemies as well as the population's resilience,' Reza H.
These factors include defenselessness of the victim, in relation to any harm resulting from the offence, any serious or long term physical or psychological effect on the victim, the magnitude of the breach of any relationship of trust between the victim and the offender, threats by the offender to prevent the victim from reporting the offence, and deliberate concealment of the offending from the authorities.
Regarding depressive PD (Dep-PD), the theory of Millon proposes the existence of a pessimistic/melancholic personality profile characterized by despair, defenselessness, fatalism, feelings of uselessness, abandonment, asceticism, exhaustion, and woefulness (Millon, 2011).
Reflected in the conceptualization of both bis sorcery and tamam witchcraft is an idea of 'a fundamental impermeability of the skin-wall as a boundary' both actions inviting a 'fear of unbearable penetration and the psychic defenselessness it entails' (Benthien 2002:27-31).
And that there's an absolute relationship between the defenselessness and everything that's impressive about them.
Exposure to online defenselessness on a social network site (Pera, 2018) may contiguously interfere with a user's psychological wellbeing.