Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
One who defends; a defender.
A person required to make answer in an action or suit; -- opposed to plaintiff.
Serving, or suitable, for defense; defensive.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913), edited by Noah Porter. About
hEnglish - advanced version
\de*fend"ant\ (aant), a. [f. défendant, p. pr. of défendre. see defend.]
1. serving, or suitable, for defense; defensive. [obs.] with men of courage and with means defendant.
2. making defense.
\de*fend"ant\, n. 1. one who defends; a defender. the rampiers and ditches which the defendants had cast up. --spotswood.
2. (law) a person required to make answer in an action or suit; -- opposed to plaintiff.
note: the term is applied to any party of whom a demand is made in court, whether the party denies and defends the claim, or admits it, and suffers a default; also to a party charged with a criminal offense.
n : a person or institution against whom an action is brought in a court of law; the person being sued or accused [syn: suspect]
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A person against whom a suit is brought.
The 'Lectric Law Library
In criminal cases, the person accused of the crime. In civil matters, the person or organization that is being sued.
The person against whom a lawsuit is filed is usually called the defendant. In some states, or in certain types of actions, the defendant is called the respondent. The term respondent is also used to designate the person responding to an appeal.
At common law a defendant cannot have judgment to recover a sum of money of the plaintiff, but this rule is, in some cases, altered by statute.
This entry contains material from Bouvier's Legal Dictionary, a work published in the 1850's.
Courtesy of the 'Lectric Law Library
Duhaime.org Legal Dictionary
The person, company or organization who defends a legal action taken by a plaintiff and against whom the court has been asked to order damages or specific corrective action redress some type of unlawful or improper action alleged by the plaintiff. - (read more on Defendant)
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In civil proceedings, the party responding to the complaint; one whois sued and called upon to make satisfaction for a wrong complained of byanother. In criminal proceedings, the accused.