Definify.com

Webster 1913 Edition


Fence

Fence

(fĕns)
,
Noun.
[Abbrev. from
defence
.]
1.
That which fends off attack or danger; a defense; a protection; a cover; security; shield.
Let us be backed with God and with the seas,
Which he hath given for
fence
impregnable.
Shakespeare
A
fence
betwixt us and the victor’s wrath.
Addison.
2.
An inclosure about a field or other space, or about any object; especially, an inclosing structure of wood, iron, or other material, intended to prevent intrusion from without or straying from within.
Leaps o'er the
fence
with ease into the fold.
Milton.
☞ In England a hedge, ditch, or wall, as well as a structure of boards, palings, or rails, is called a fence.
3.
(Locks)
A projection on the bolt, which passes through the tumbler gates in locking and unlocking.
4.
Self-defense by the use of the sword; the art and practice of fencing and sword play; hence, skill in debate and repartee. See
Fencing
.
Enjoy your dear wit, and gay rhetoric,
That hath so well been taught her dazzing
fence
.
Milton.
Of dauntless courage and consummate skill in
fence
.
Macaulay.
5.
A receiver of stolen goods, or a place where they are received.
[Slang]
Mayhew.
Fence month
(Forest Law)
,
the month in which female deer are fawning, when hunting is prohibited.
Bullokar.
Fence roof
,
a covering for defense.
“They fitted their shields close to one another in manner of a fence roof.”
Holland.
Fence time
,
the breeding time of fish or game, when they should not be killed.
Rail fence
,
a fence made of rails, sometimes supported by posts.
Ring fence
,
a fence which encircles a large area, or a whole estate, within one inclosure.
Worm fence
,
a zigzag fence composed of rails crossing one another at their ends; – called also
snake fence
, or
Virginia rail fence
.
To be on the fence
,
to be undecided or uncommitted in respect to two opposing parties or policies.
[Colloq.]

Fence

,
Verb.
T.
[
imp. & p. p.
Fenced
(fĕnst)
;
p. pr. & vb. n.
Fencing
(fĕn′sĭng)
.]
1.
To fend off danger from; to give security to; to protect; to guard.
To
fence
my ear against thy sorceries.
Milton.
2.
To inclose with a fence or other protection; to secure by an inclosure.
O thou wall! . . . dive in the earth,
And
fence
not Athens.
Shakespeare
A sheepcote
fenced
about with olive trees.
Shakespeare
To fence the tables
(Scot. Church)
,
to make a solemn address to those who present themselves to commune at the Lord's supper, on the feelings appropriate to the service, in order to hinder, so far as possible, those who are unworthy from approaching the table.
McCheyne.

Fence

,
Verb.
I.
1.
To make a defense; to guard one's self of anything, as against an attack; to give protection or security, as by a fence.
Vice is the more stubborn as well as the more dangerous evil, and therefore, in the first place, to be
fenced
against.
Locke.
2.
To practice the art of attack and defense with the sword or with the foil, esp. with the smallsword, using the point only.
He will
fence
with his own shadow.
Shakespeare
3.
Hence, to fight or dispute in the manner of fencers, that is, by thrusting, guarding, parrying, etc.
They
fence
and push, and, pushing, loudly roar;
Their dewlaps and their sides are bat[GREEK]ed in gore.
Dryden.
As when a billow, blown against,
Falls back, the voice with which I
fenced

A little ceased, but recommenced.
Tennyson.

Webster 1828 Edition


Fence

FENCE

,
Noun.
fens. [See Fend.]
1.
A wall, hedge, ditch, bank, or line of posts and rails, or of boards or pickets, intended to confine beasts from straying, and to guard a field from being entered by cattle, or from other encroachment. A good farmer has good fences about his farm; an insufficient fence is evidence of bad management. Broken windows and poor fences are evidences of idleness or poverty or of both.
2.
A guard; any thing to restrain entrance; that which defends from attack, approach or injury; security; defense.
A fence betwixt us and the victor's wrath.
3.
Fencing, or the art of fencing; defense.
4.
Skill in fencing or defense.

FENCE

,
Verb.
T.
fens.
1.
To inclose with a hedge, wall, or any thing that prevents the escape or entrance of cattle; to secure by an inclosure. In New England, farmers, for the most part, fence their lands with posts and rails, or with stone walls. In England, lands are usually fenced with hedges and ditches.
He hath fenced my way that I cannot pass. Job. 19.
2.
To guard; to fortify.
So much of adder's wisdom I have learnt, to fence my ear against thy sorceries.

FENCE

, v.i.
1.
To practice the art of fencing; to use a sword or foil, for the purpose of learning the art of attack and defense. To fence well is deemed a useful accomplishment for military gentlemen.
2.
To fight and defend by giving and avoiding blows or thrusts.
They fence and push, and pushing, loudly roar, their dewlaps and their sides are bathed in gore.
3.
To raise a fence; to guard. It is difficult to fence against unruly cattle.

Definition 2022


fence

fence

English

A fence (barrier)

Noun

fence (plural fences)

  1. A thin, human-constructed barrier which separates two pieces of land or a house perimeter.
    • 1865, Horatio Alger, Paul Prescott's Charge, Ch.XVII:
      There was a weak place in the fence separating the two inclosures
    • 2013 June 8, The new masters and commanders”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8839, page 52:
      From the ground, Colombo’s port does not look like much. Those entering it are greeted by wire fences, walls dating back to colonial times and security posts. For mariners leaving the port after lonely nights on the high seas, the delights of the B52 Night Club and Stallion Pub lie a stumble away.
  2. Someone who hides or buys and sells stolen goods, a criminal middleman for transactions of stolen goods, a fence.
    • 1920, Mary Roberts Rinehart, Avery Hopwood, The Bat, chapterI:
      The Bat—they called him the Bat. []. He'd never been in stir, the bulls had never mugged him, he didn't run with a mob, he played a lone hand, and fenced his stuff so that even the fence couldn't swear he knew his face.
    1. The place whence such a middleman operates.
  3. Skill in oral debate.
  4. The art or practice of fencing.
  5. A guard or guide on machinery.
  6. (figuratively) A barrier, for example an emotional barrier.
  7. (computing, programming) A memory barrier.

Hyponyms

Derived terms

Related terms

Translations

See also

Verb

fence (third-person singular simple present fences, present participle fencing, simple past and past participle fenced)

  1. (transitive) To enclose, contain or separate by building fence.
  2. (transitive) To defend or guard.
    • John Milton (1608-1674)
      To fence my ear against thy sorceries.
  3. (transitive) To engage in the selling or buying of stolen goods.
    • 1920, Mary Roberts Rinehart, Avery Hopwood, The Bat, chapterI:
      The Bat—they called him the Bat. []. He'd never been in stir, the bulls had never mugged him, he didn't run with a mob, he played a lone hand, and fenced his stuff so that even the fence couldn't swear he knew his face.
  4. (intransitive, sports) To engage in (the sport) fencing.
    • 1921, Rafael Sabatini, Scaramouche,
      Challenges are flying right and left between these bully-swordsmen, these spadassinicides, and poor devils of the robe who have never learnt to fence with anything but a quill.
  5. (intransitive, equestrianism) To jump over a fence.

Synonyms

  • (to sell or buy stolen goods): pawn

Translations


Czech

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /ˈfɛnt͡sɛ/
  • Rhymes: -ɛnt͡sɛ
  • Hyphenation: fen‧ce

Noun

fence

  1. dative singular of fenka
    • 2013, Jana Holá (trans.), Oběť Molochovi, Host, translation of Till offer åt Molok by Åsa Larsson, ISBN 978-80-7491-024-1, page 303:
      „Zmiz,“ zašeptá fence chraptivě do ucha.
      "Clear off," she whispers hoarsely to the bitch's ear.
  2. locative singular of fenka
    • 1969, Stanislav Budín, Dynastie Kennedyů, Praha: Naše vojsko, page 126:
      Chruščov se rozesmál a vyprávěl o nových sovětských družicích, o fence Lajce, která byla prvním živým tvorem ve vesmíru a nedávno vrhla štěňata.
      Khrushchev started laughing and talked about new Soviet satellites, about the bitch Laika, who was the first alive creature in space and who gave birth to her puppies not a long time ago.