Defence vs Defense

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What’s the difference between them?

Defence

Meaning:

The protection of a person or place against attack, danger, or harm.

Examples:

1. The lawyer is preparing his client's defence for the trial.

2. The nation increased its defence budget to protect its borders.

3. The witnesses provided a strong defence for the accused.

Defense

Meaning:

Meaning is the same, but such spelling is mostly used in American English.

Examples:

1. The defense lawyer argued passionately for her client's innocence.

2. The team's defense was outstanding throughout the match.

3. The army was ordered to prepare for their defense against the enemy.

Learn similar and opposite words to spot the difference

Synonyms

Antonyms

Defence

protect

Attack

Defense

protect

Attack

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Defence", "Defense".

1. Defense is the American English spelling.

2. Defence is the British English spelling.

3. To remember which spelling is which, try to remember that the American spelling of the word has a 'C' in it, while the British spelling has an 'S' instead.

Check the full list of commonly confused words in English

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Frequently asked questions

When to use the word 'Defence'?

The word 'Defence' is used mainly in British English to refer to the act of defending against an attack or a danger. In this context, it is often used in military contexts such as defending against military attack as well as civilian contexts such as defending against a criminal event.

When to use the word 'Defense'?

The word 'Defense' is mainly used in American English to refer to the act of defending against an attack or a danger. It is primarily used in military contexts such as defending against military attacks as well as civilian contexts such as defending against a criminal event.

Do the words have the same pronunciation?

No, the words have different pronunciations. The word 'Defence' is pronounced as 'dih-fens' and the word 'Defense' is pronounced as 'dih-fenss'.

What are common mistakes associated with the words 'Defence' and 'Defense'?

A common mistake is to use the wrong spelling of the word in the wrong context. For example, using the British English spelling of 'Defence' when writing an essay in American English or vice versAnother common mistake is to use the wrong pronunciation in the wrong context. For example, using the American English pronunciation of 'Defense' when speaking in British English.

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. The soccer team needs a stronger ____ if they want to win the match.

2. The Pentagon is the headquarters of the U.S. Department of ____.

3. The solicitor prepared a solid ____ for her client in the British court.

4. We need to build a ____ around the perimeter of the garden to keep out pests.

5. The army was called in to provide extra ____ during the national crisis.

6. In the UK, many castles were constructed with thick walls as a primary form of ____.

1. defence/defense

Explanation: Theres no specific clue indicating British or American preference, so both defence (British) and defense (American) are correct.

2. defense

Explanation: The clue is the mention of The Pentagon and U.S. Department, which indicates American English. Thus, defense is the correct choice.

3. defence

Explanation: The mention of British court is a clear indicator that British English is expected. Therefore, defence is correct.

4. defence/defense

Explanation: This sentence doesnt have a clear indication of British or American English, so both defence and defense are correct.

5. defence/defense

Explanation: Without a clear regional reference in the sentence, both the British spelling defence and the American spelling defense are acceptable.

6. defence

Explanation: The reference to the UK indicates that British English is expected. Hence, defence is the correct choice.

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