From Middle English withstanden, from Old English wiþstandan, from Proto-West Germanic *wiþistandan (“to withstand, resist”), equivalent to with- (“against”) + stand. Cognate with Old Frisian withstanda (“to resist”). Compare also Dutch weerstaan (“to withstand, repel”), German widerstehen (“to withstand, resist, defy”).
- (transitive) To resist or endure (something) successfully.
- 1980, Robert M. Jones, editor, Walls and Ceilings, Time-Life Books, →ISBN, page 65:
- Tests showed that a tin ceiling could withstand a temperature of 1,369° for an hour and 10 minutes, whereas plaster collapsed in 12 minutes.
- 2014 October 26, Jeff Howell, “Is the Japanese knotweed threat exaggerated? Our troubleshooter calls for calm about Japanese knotweed in the garden – and moss on the roof [print version: Don't panic about an overhyped invasion, 25 October 2014, p. P13]”, in The Daily Telegraph (Property):
- Some old, underfired clay pantiles might be damaged by button mosses rooting in cracks and fissures. But most post-war tiles are hard enough to withstand a bit of moss growth.
- To oppose (something) forcefully.
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