Defy definition

dĭ-fī
To resist or oppose boldly or openly.
verb
14
1
To dare (someone) to do or prove something.
verb
7
4
(archaic) To challenge (someone) to fight.
verb
2
1
To defy is defined as to work against or resist something.

An example of to defy is to break a law by going on land that is posted with a no trespassing sign.

verb
1
0
To challenge or dare (someone) to do something.

She defied her accusers to prove their charges.

verb
1
0
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(obsolete) A challenge.

noun
1
0
To renounce or dissolve all bonds of affiance, faith, or obligation with; to reject, refuse, or renounce.
verb
1
0
To challenge (someone) to do something difficult.

To defy an enemy; to defy the power of a magistrate; to defy the arguments of an opponent; to defy public opinion.

verb
1
0
To refuse to obey.

If you defy your teacher you will get the strap.

verb
1
0
To not conform to or follow a pattern or certain set of rules.
verb
1
0
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To oppose or resist with boldness and assurance.

Defied the blockade by sailing straight through it.

verb
0
0
To refuse to submit to or cooperate with.

Defied the court order by leaving the country.

verb
0
0
To be beyond the application or scope of; be contrary or resistant to.

An act that defies explanation; a problem that defies any conventional approach.

verb
2
3
A defiance or challenge.
noun
0
2
To resist completely in a baffling way.

The puzzle defied solution.

verb
1
5
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
defy
Plural:
defies

Origin of defy

  • Middle English defien from Old French desfier from Vulgar Latin disfīdāre Latin dis- dis- Latin fīdus faithful bheidh- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Old French desfier, from Vulgar Latin *disfidare (“renounce one's faith”), from Latin dis- (“away”) + fidus (“faithful”). Meaning shifted 14c. from "be disloyal" to "challenge."

    From Wiktionary