Guard"i*an (?), n. [OF. guardain, gardien, F. gardien, LL. guardianus. See Guard, v. t., and cf. Wasden.]


One who guards, preserves, or secures; one to whom any person or thing is committed for protection, security, or preservation from injury; a warden.

2. Law

One who has, or is entitled to, the custody of the person or property of an infant, a minor without living parents, or a person incapable of managing his own affairs.

Of the several species of guardians, the first are guardians by nature. -- viz., the father and (in some cases) the mother of the child. Blockstone.

Guardian ad litem () Law, a guardian appointed by a court of justice to conduct a particular suit. -- Guardians of the poor, the members of a board appointed or elected to care for the relief of the poor within a township, or district.


© Webster 1913.

Guard"i*an (?), a.

Performing, or appropriate to, the office of a protector; as, a guardian care.

Feast of Guardian Angels R. C. Ch. a church festival instituted by Pope Paul V., and celebrated on October 2d. -- Guardian angel. (a) The particular spiritual being believed in some branches of the Christian church to have guardianship and protection of each human being from birth. (b) Hence, a protector or defender in general. O. W. Holmes. -- Guardian spirit, in the belief of many pagan nations, a spirit, often of a deceased relative or friend, that presides over the interests of a household, a city, or a region.


© Webster 1913.