• synonyms


[dih-fahy-uh ns]
See more synonyms for defiance on Thesaurus.com
  1. a daring or bold resistance to authority or to any opposing force.
  2. open disregard; contempt (often followed by of): defiance of danger; His refusal amounted to defiance.
  3. a challenge to meet in combat or in a contest.
Show More
  1. bid defiance to, to offer resistance; defy.
  2. in defiance of, in spite of; notwithstanding: There was a splendid audience in defiance of the rainstorm.
Show More

Origin of defiance

1250–1300; Middle English < Old French, equivalent to defi(er) to defy + -ance -ance
Related formsnon·de·fi·ance, nounpre·de·fi·ance, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


British Dictionary definitions for in defiance of


  1. open or bold resistance to or disregard for authority, opposition, or power
  2. a challenging attitude or behaviour; challenge
Show More
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

Word Origin and History for in defiance of



c.1300, from Old French desfiance "challenge, declaration of war," from desfiant, present participle of desfier (see defy).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with in defiance of

in defiance of

In spite of, with outright disregard for, as in They went on strike in defiance of union policy. This term was first recorded in 1750.

Show More


see in defiance of.

Show More
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.