De*fen"sive (?), a. [Cf. F. d'efensif.]

1.

Serving to defend or protect; proper for defense; opposed to offensive; as, defensive armor.

A moat defensive to a house. Shak.

2.

Carried on by resisting attack or aggression; -- opposed to offensive; as, defensive war.

3.

In a state or posture of defense.

Milton.

 

© Webster 1913.


De*fen"sive, n.

That which defends; a safeguard.

Wars preventive, upon just fears, are true defensive. Bacon.

To be on the defensive, To stand on the defensive, to be or stand in a state or posture of defense or resistance, in opposition to aggression or attack.

 

© Webster 1913.

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