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defendant

[dih-fen-duh nt or especially in court for 1, -dant] /dɪˈfɛn dənt or especially in court for 1, -dænt/
noun
1.
Law. a person, company, etc., against whom a claim or charge is brought in a court (opposed to plaintiff).
2.
Obsolete, defender.
adjective
3.
making one's defense; defending:
a defendant corporation.
4.
Obsolete, defensive.
Origin
1275-1325
1275-1325; Middle English defendaunt < Anglo-French (Middle French, Old French defendant). See defend, -ant
Related forms
nondefendant, noun
undefendant, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for undefendant

defendant

/dɪˈfɛndənt/
noun
1.
a person against whom an action or claim is brought in a court of law Compare plaintiff
adjective
2.
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
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Word Origin and History for undefendant

defendant

n.

c.1400, in the legal sense, from French défendant, present participle of défendre (see defend). Earliest use in English was as a present participle adjective meaning "defending" (c.1300).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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undefendant in Culture

defendant definition


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

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