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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Ward \Ward\, n. [AS. weard, fem., guard, weard, masc., keeper, guard; akin to OS. ward a watcher, warden, G. wart, OHG. wart, Icel. v["o]r[eth]r a warden, a watch, Goth. -wards in da['u]rawards a doorkeeper, and E. wary; cf. OF. warde guard, from the German. See Ware, a., Wary, and cf. Guard, Wraith.] 1. The act of guarding; watch; guard; guardianship; specifically, a guarding during the day. See the Note under Watch, n., 1. [1913 Webster] Still, when she slept, he kept both watch and ward. --Spenser. [1913 Webster] 2. One who, or that which, guards; garrison; defender; protector; means of guarding; defense; protection. [1913 Webster] For the best ward of mine honor. --Shak. [1913 Webster] The assieged castle's ward Their steadfast stands did mightily maintain. --Spenser. [1913 Webster] For want of other ward, He lifted up his hand, his front to guard. --Dryden. [1913 Webster] 3. The state of being under guard or guardianship; confinement under guard; the condition of a child under a guardian; custody. [1913 Webster] And he put them in ward in the house of the captain of the guard. --Gen. xl. 3. [1913 Webster] I must attend his majesty's command, to whom I am now in ward. --Shak. [1913 Webster] It is also inconvenient, in Ireland, that the wards and marriages of gentlemen's children should be in the disposal of any of those lords. --Spenser. [1913 Webster] 4. A guarding or defensive motion or position, as in fencing; guard. "Thou knowest my old ward; here I lay, and thus I bore my point." --Shak. [1913 Webster] 5. One who, or that which, is guarded. Specifically: [1913 Webster] (a) A minor or person under the care of a guardian; as, a ward in chancery. "You know our father's ward, the fair Monimia." --Otway. [1913 Webster] (b) A division of a county. [Eng. & Scot.] [1913 Webster] (c) A division, district, or quarter of a town or city. [1913 Webster] Throughout the trembling city placed a guard, Dealing an equal share to every ward. --Dryden. [1913 Webster] (d) A division of a forest. [Eng.] [1913 Webster] (e) A division of a hospital; as, a fever ward. [1913 Webster] 6. (a) A projecting ridge of metal in the interior of a lock, to prevent the use of any key which has not a corresponding notch for passing it. (b) A notch or slit in a key corresponding to a ridge in the lock which it fits; a ward notch. --Knight. [1913 Webster] The lock is made . . . more secure by attaching wards to the front, as well as to the back, plate of the lock, in which case the key must be furnished with corresponding notches. --Tomlinson. [1913 Webster] [1913 Webster] Ward penny (O. Eng. Law), money paid to the sheriff or castellan for watching and warding a castle. Ward staff, a constable's or watchman's staff. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]