defeat - definition in the American English Dictionary - Cambridge Dictionaries Online

Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “defeat”

See all translations


verb [T]  us   /dɪˈfit/
to oppose and cause someone to lose in a competition or war so that you can win: Bill Clinton defeated George Bush for the presidency in 1992.


noun [C/U]  us   /dɪˈfit/
success in competition with an opponent, causing the opponent to lose so that you can win: [U] In the American Civil War, the North’s defeat of the South involved tremendous loss of life on both sides. A defeat is also the action or fact of losing a competition or war: [C] This was the team’s fifth straight defeat.
(Definition of defeat from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of defeat?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “defeat” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

extra time

a period of time in a sports game in which play continues if neither team has won in the usual time allowed for the game

Word of the Day

She’s got very good posture. (How we stand and sit)

by Liz Walter,
May 27, 2015
Recently on this blog, we looked at the words that we use to describe the way we move. This week we’re looking at words for describing our bodies when they are still, whether we are standing or sitting. Since most of us do far too much of this, let’s start with sitting.

Read More 

ancestral health noun

May 25, 2015
diet based on the presumed diet of our Palaeolithic ancestors ‘Ancestral health,’ to use a term popular among Paleo followers, has gone mass.

Read More