Meaning of “close ranks” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"close ranks" in British English

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close ranks

When the members of a group or organization close ranks, they make an effort to stay united, especially in order to defend themselves from severe criticism:

In the past, the party would have closed ranks around its leader and defended him loyally.

(Definition of “close ranks” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)