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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Shield \Shield\, n. [OE. sheld, scheld, AS. scield, scild, sceld, scyld; akin to OS. scild, OFries. skeld, D. & G. schild, OHG. scilt, Icel. skj["o]ldr, Sw. sk["o]ld, Dan. skiold, Goth. skildus; of uncertain origin. Cf. Sheldrake.] 1. A broad piece of defensive armor, carried on the arm, -- formerly in general use in war, for the protection of the body. See Buckler. [1913 Webster] Now put your shields before your hearts and fight, With hearts more proof than shields. --Shak. [1913 Webster] 2. Anything which protects or defends; defense; shelter; protection. "My council is my shield." --Shak. [1913 Webster] 3. Figuratively, one who protects or defends. [1913 Webster] Fear not, Abram; I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward. --Gen. xv. 1. [1913 Webster] 4. (Bot.) In lichens, a Hardened cup or disk surrounded by a rim and containing the fructification, or asci. [1913 Webster] 5. (Her.) The escutcheon or field on which are placed the bearings in coats of arms. Cf. Lozenge. See Illust. of Escutcheon. [1913 Webster] 6. (Mining & Tunneling) A framework used to protect workmen in making an adit under ground, and capable of being pushed along as excavation progresses. [1913 Webster] 7. A spot resembling, or having the form of, a shield. "Bespotted as with shields of red and black." --Spenser. [1913 Webster] 8. A coin, the old French crown, or ['e]cu, having on one side the figure of a shield. [Obs.] --Chaucer. [1913 Webster] Shield fern (Bot.), any fern of the genus Aspidium, in which the fructifications are covered with shield-shaped indusia; -- called also wood fern. See Illust. of Indusium. [1913 Webster]