Borrowed from French attaque, derived from the verb attaquer, from Italian attaccare (“to join, attach”) (used in attaccare battaglia (“to join battle”)), from Frankish *stakka (“stick”). Doublet of attach.
attack (plural attacks)
- An attempt to cause damage, injury to, or death of opponent or enemy.
- An attempt to detract from the worth or credibility of, a person, position, idea, object, or thing, by physical, verbal, emotional, or other assault.
2013 July 19, Mark Tran, “Denied an education by war”, in The Guardian Weekly, volume 189, number 6, page 1:
- One particularly damaging, but often ignored, effect of conflict on education is the proliferation of attacks on schools […] as children, teachers or school buildings become the targets of attacks. Parents fear sending their children to school. Girls are particularly vulnerable to sexual violence.
They claimed the censorship of the article was an attack on free speech.
- A time in which one attacks. The offence of a battle.
The army timed their attack to coincide with the local celebrations.
- (cricket) Collectively, the bowlers of a cricket side.
- (volleyball) Any contact with the ball other than a serve or block which sends the ball across the plane of the net.
- (lacrosse) The three attackmen on the field or all the attackmen of a team.
- (medicine) The sudden onset of a disease or condition.
I've had an attack of the flu.
- An active episode of a chronic or recurrent disease.
- (music) The onset of a musical note, particularly with respect to the strength (and duration) of that onset.
- (audio) The amount of time it takes for the volume of an audio signal to go from zero to maximum level (e.g. an audio waveform representing a snare drum hit would feature a very fast attack, whereas that of a wave washing to shore would feature a slow attack).
attempt to cause damage or injury
offense of a battle
cricket: bowlers of a cricket side
volleyball: hit other than serve or block that sends the ball over the net
medicine: sudden onset of a disease
amount of time it takes for the volume of an audio signal to go from zero to maximum level
- (transitive) To apply violent force to someone or something.
- This species of snake will only attack humans if it feels threatened.
- (transitive) To aggressively challenge a person, idea, etc., with words (particularly in newspaper headlines, because it typesets into less space than "criticize" or similar).
- She published an article attacking the recent pay cuts.
2012 June 3, Nathan Rabin, “TV: Review: THE SIMPSONS (CLASSIC): “Mr. Plow” (season 4, episode 9; originally aired 11/19/1992)”, in (Please provide the book title or journal name):
- In its God-like prime, The Simpsons attacked well-worn satirical fodder from unexpected angles, finding fresh laughs in the hoariest of subjects.
- (transitive) To begin to affect; to act upon injuriously or destructively; to begin to decompose or waste.
- On the fourth of March he was attacked by fever.
- B. Stewart
- Hydrofluoric acid […] attacks the glass.
- (transitive) To deal with something in a direct way; to set to work upon.
- We´ll have dinner before we attack the biology homework.
- I attacked the meal with a hearty appetite.
- (transitive, cricket) To aim balls at the batsman’s wicket.
- (intransitive, cricket) To set a field, or bowl in a manner designed to get wickets.
- (intransitive, cricket) To bat aggressively, so as to score runs quickly.
- (soccer) To move forward in an active attempt to score a point, as opposed to trying not to concede.
2011 October 15, Michael Da Silva, “Wigan 1 - 3 Bolton”, in BBC Sport:
- Six successive defeats had left them rooted to the bottom of the Premier League table but, clearly under instructions to attack from the outset, Bolton started far the brighter.
- (cycling) To accelerate quickly in an attempt to get ahead of the other riders.
- See also Wikisaurus:attack
to apply violent force
to aggressively challenge with words
cricket: to aim balls at the batsman’s wicket
cricket: to set a field, or bowl in a manner designed to get wickets
soccer: to move forward in an attempt to score point
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.
Translations to be checked
- attack in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913
- attack in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911
- attack at OneLook Dictionary Search
|Declension of attack|