Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.

gird 1

v. gird·ed or girt (gûrt), gird·ing, girds
a. To encircle (a person or the part of the body) with a belt or band.
b. To fasten or secure (clothing, for example) with a belt or band.
c. To surround.
2. To prepare (oneself) for action.
To prepare for action: "Men still spoke of peace but girded more sternly for war" (W. Bruce Lincoln).
gird (up) (one's) loins
To summon up one's inner resources in preparation for action.

[Middle English girden, from Old English gyrdan; see gher- in Indo-European roots.]

gird 2

intr. & tr.v. gird·ed, gird·ing, girds
To jeer or jeer at.
A sarcastic remark.

[Middle English girden, to strike.]
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.
References in classic literature ?
On girding him with the sword the worthy lady said to him, "May God make your worship a very fortunate knight, and grant you success in battle." Don Quixote asked her name in order that he might from that time forward know to whom he was beholden for the favour he had received, as he meant to confer upon her some portion of the honour he acquired by the might of his arm.
We were not very early risers--the sun would be shooting his golden spikes above the Happar mountain, ere I threw aside my tappa robe, and girding my long tunic about my waist, sallied out with Fayaway and Kory-Kory, and the rest of the household, and bent my steps towards the stream.
Both the masculine girding of loins and the feminine lighting of lamps point to vigilance and watchfulness for the Lord's coming.
The authors have organized the main body of their text in sixteen chapters devoted to the B-17 bomber as a partner or a competitor to the B-24, girding up for combat, the evolution of the unit from a wing to a division in status, and a wide variety of other related subjects.
In his desperation to boost household spending he has checked out the available sources of spare cash and has come up with one that Robert Maxwell tried years ago - pensions A whole new industry is now girding its loins in anticipation of the freedom to cash in pension annuities.