There are 2 main definitions of gird in English:

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gird 1

Pronunciation: /ɡərd/

verb (past and past participle girded or girt /ɡərt/)

[with object] literary
1Encircle (a person or part of the body) with a belt or band: a young man was to be girded with the belt of knighthood
More example sentences
  • One believer will gird him or herself with a towel, bend a knee, and wash the feet of another in a simple basin, drying the feet with the towel that is wrapped around the waist.
  • I invest him with your robe, gird him with your sash, entrust him with your authority; and he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and to the House of Judah.
  • A golden belt girded his waist.
1.1Secure (a garment or sword) on the body with a belt or band: a white robe girded with a magenta sash
More example sentences
  • One was prepared to leave, and had only to gird his sword about his waist, when the other spoke suddenly.
  • They gird their weapons, mount their horses, and form into groups in the guise of a troop of soldiers.
  • The bushes rustled, and around us three more men, all with swords girt at their sides, stepped out.
1.2Surround; encircle: steel rings that gird the elongated, tubular building
More example sentences
  • Well that's interesting, because we sing in our national anthem that ‘Our land is girt by sea’, but we have been slow to recognise its importance in indigenous culture.
  • I thought of our pilgrimages out of the city, the slow tide of traffic to the shore or family visits, a cincture of security and welcome girding the suburbs and beyond.
  • In the eastern section were three broad stone pillars supporting the balcony above, which girded the guest rooms on the second floor.


gird (up) one's loins

Prepare and strengthen oneself for what is to come.
Example sentences
  • You get more tired and less able to take the stress and to gird your loins and take on another day.
  • He calls on ‘progressives’ everywhere to gird their loins for a battle for humanity.
  • I think she should have told him and let the family gird their loins against it.
prepare, get ready, gear up;
nerve, steel, galvanize, brace, fortify
informal psych oneself up

Phrasal verbs

gird oneself for

Prepare oneself for (dangerous or difficult future actions).
Example sentences
  • So, in this alternate history, just as in our real history, America once more girds itself for war.
  • The students had girded themselves for the slopes in three distinct modes.
  • So, in a sense, it is understandable that we gird ourselves for this sober second anniversary with a lingering sense of uncertainty.


Old English gyrdan, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch gorden and German gürten, also to girdle1 and girth.

Words that rhyme with gird

absurd, bird, Byrd, curd, engird, Heard, herd, Kurd, misheard, nerd, overheard, reheard, third, undergird, undeterred, unheard, unstirred, word
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There are 2 main definitions of gird in English:

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gird 2

Pronunciation: /ɡərd/


[no object]
Make cutting or critical remarks: they girded at the committee


A cutting or critical remark; a taunt.


Middle English (in the sense 'strike, stab'): of unknown origin.

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