Etymology
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territorial (adj.)
1620s, "of or pertaining to a territory," from Late Latin territorialis, from territorium (see territory). In reference to British regiments, from 1881. In reference to an area defended by an animal, from 1920. Territorial waters is from 1841. Territorial army "British home defense" is from 1908. Territorial imperative "animal need to claim and defend territory" is from 1966.
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massacre (v.)

"to kill (many beings) indiscriminately," commonly in reference to those who are not in a condition to defend themselves, 1580s, from French massacrer "to slaughter" (16c.), from massacre (n.) "wholesale slaughter, carnage" (see massacre (n.)). Sometimes 17c.-18c. merely "to murder cruelly," without reference to number. Related: Massacred; massacring.

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cataphract (n.)

1580s, "scale-like metal armor for the body," from Latin cataphractes "breastplate of iron scales," from Greek kataphraktes "coat of mail," from kataphraktos "mailed, protected, covered up," from kataphrassein "to fortify," from kata "entirely" (see cata-) + phrassein "to fence around, enclose, defend" (see diaphragm). From 1670s as "a soldier in full armor" (probably from Latin cataphracti "mailed soldiers"). Related: Cataphractic.

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parry (v.)

1630s, "to turn aside or ward off" the blow of a weapon (transitive), from French parez! (a word which would have been heard often in fencing lessons), imperative of parer "ward off," from Italian parare "to ward or defend (a blow)" (see para- (2)). Related: Parried; parrying. Non-fencing use is from 1718. The noun, "an act of warding off or turning aside," is by 1705, from the verb.

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assert (v.)

c. 1600, "declare;" 1640s, "vindicate, maintain, or defend by words or measures," from Latin assertus, past participle of asserere/adserere "to claim, lay claim to, appropriate," from ad "to" (see ad-) + serere "to join together, put in a row" (from PIE root *ser- (2) "to line up"). Related: Asserted; asserting. To assert oneself "stand up for one's rights or authority" is recorded from 1879.

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weir (n.)

Old English wer "dam, fence, enclosure," especially one for catching fish (related to werian "dam up"), from Proto-Germanic *wer-jon- (source also of Old Norse ver, Old Frisian and Middle Dutch were, Dutch weer, Old High German wari, German Wehr "defense, protection," Gothic warjan "to defend, protect"), from PIE root *wer- (4) "to cover."

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self-defense (n.)

1650s, "act of defending oneself," first in Hobbes, from self- + defense. In sports sense, first with reference to fencing (1728), then boxing and pugilism (1820s).

[I]n law, the act of forcibly resisting a forcible attack upon one's own person or property, or upon the persons or property of those whom, by law, one has a right to protect and defend. [Century Dictionary]
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scaramouche (n.)

1660s, name of a cowardly braggart (supposed by some to represent a Spanish don) in traditional Italian comedy, from Italian Scaramuccia, literally "skirmish," from schermire "to fence," from a Germanic source (such as Old High German skirmen "defend"); see skirmish (n.). According to OED, a vogue word in late 17c. London due to the popularity of the character as staged there by Italian actor Tiberio Fiurelli (1608-1694).

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Dracula (n.)

name of the vampire king in Bram Stoker's novel (1897). It was a surname of Prince Vlad II of Wallachia (d. 1476), and means in Romanian "son of Dracul," literally "the dragon" (see dragon), from the name and emblem taken by Vlad's father, also named Vlad, c. 1431 when he joined the Order of the Dragon, founded 1418 by Sigismund the Glorious of Hungary to defend the Christian religion from the Turks and crush heretics and schismatics.

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mayhem (n.)

late 15c., "the violent doing of a bodily hurt to another person," from Anglo-French maihem (13c.), from Old French mahaigne "injury, wrong, a hurt, harm, damage;" related to mahaignier "to injure, wound, mutilate, cripple" (see maim). Originally, in law, the crime of maiming a person "to make him less able to defend himself or annoy his adversary" [OED]. By 19c. it was being used generally of any sort of violent disorder or needless or willful damage or violence.

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