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defendant

[ dih-fen-duhnt or, especially in court for 1, -dant ]
/ dɪˈfɛn dənt or, especially in court for 1, -dænt /
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noun

Law. a person, company, etc., against whom a claim or charge is brought in a court (opposed to plaintiff).
Obsolete. defender.

adjective

making one's defense; defending: a defendant corporation.
Obsolete. defensive.

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Origin of defendant

First recorded in 1275–1325; Middle English defendaunt, from Anglo-French (Middle French, Old French defendant ). See defend, -ant

OTHER WORDS FROM defendant

non·de·fend·ant, nounun·de·fend·ant, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for defendant

British Dictionary definitions for defendant

defendant
/ (dɪˈfɛndənt) /

noun

a person against whom an action or claim is brought in a court of lawCompare plaintiff

adjective

making a defence; defending
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for defendant

defendant

The party that is being sued in court. (Compare plaintiff.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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