attack

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angle of attack

The position of an airplane as it moves through the air. What is our angle of attack, Captain? Are we going to be able to land this plane as planned?
See also: angle, attack, of

attack is the best form of defense

Launching an offensive is the best way to protect oneself. I need to start some rumors about Dean, before he comes after me. I know it sounds harsh, but attack is the best form of defense!
See also: attack, defense, form, of

*an attack

(of an illness) a bout of some sickness; an instance or acute case of some disease. (*Typically: have ~; produce ~; suffer ~.) Mr. Hodder had an attack of stomach upset that forced him to stay at home.
See also: attack

*in force

 
1. [of a rule or law] currently valid or in effect. (*Typically: be ~.) Is this rule in force now? The constitution is still in force.
2. Fig. in a very large group. (*Typically: arrive ~; attack ~.) The entire group arrived in force. The mosquitoes will attack in force this evening.
See also: force

produce an attack

(of an illness) Go to an attack (of an illness).
See also: attack, produce

suffer an attack

 (of an illness)
1. Go to an attack (of an illness).
See also: attack, suffer

on the attack

forcefully criticizing or energetically competing against someone Flynn went on the attack against his rivals, finally bringing some life into a very dull campaign.
Etymology: based on the literal meaning of on the attack (using force against an enemy)
See also: attack, on

under attack

being acted against physically or with words She said cuts in spending put education in America under attack.
Related vocabulary: under fire
Etymology: based on the literal meaning of under attack (having physical force used against you)
See also: attack

in force

in effect and in use The law has been in force for two years.
Usage notes: used when referring to laws, rules, agreements, and systems
See also: force

in force

1. In full strength, in large numbers, as in Demonstrators were out in force. This usage originally alluded to a large military force. [Early 1300s]
2. Operative, binding, as in This rule is no longer in force. This usage originally alluded to the binding power of a law. [Late 1400s]
See also: force

Big Mac attack

n. a sudden and desperate need for a Big Mac sandwich, a product of the McDonald’s restaurant chain. (Big Mac is a protected trade name of McDonald’s.) I feel a Big Mac attack coming on!
See also: attack, big, mac

in force

1. In full strength; in large numbers: Demonstrators were out in force.
2. In effect; operative: a rule that is no longer in force.
See also: force
References in classic literature ?
It had this unique feature, that both sides lay open to punitive attack.
And simultaneously with the beginning of that, commenced the momentous struggle of the Germans and Asiatics that is usually known as the Battle of Niagara because of the objective of the Asiatic attack.
It was then that the Asiatic forces appeared, and it was in their attack upon this German base at Niagara that the air-fleets of East and West first met and the greater issue became clear.
Because the thing did not fight back, because it was abject and whining, because it was helpless under him, he abandoned the attack, disengaging himself from the top of the tangle into which he had slid in the lee scuppers.
There was no getting at the wild-dog, no chance to rush against him whole heartedly, with generous full weight in the attack.
Captain Bonneville was also especially careful to secure the horses, and set a vigilant guard upon them; for there lies the great object and principal danger of a night attack.
I have no doubt of your skill, Dick; I look upon all as dead that may come within range of your rifle, but I repeat that, if they attack the upper part of the balloon, you could not get a sight at them.
It seems that though we have beaten off the attack, Twala is now receiving large reinforcements, and is showing a disposition to invest us, with the view of starving us out.
Thus adjured, after taking hasty counsel with Good and Sir Henry, I delivered my opinion briefly to the effect that, being trapped, our best chance, especially in view of the failure of our water supply, was to initiate an attack upon Twala's forces.
The arrangements for attack thus briefly indicated were set in motion with a rapidity that spoke well for the perfection of the Kukuana military system.
Alas," said the Policeman, "why did I not attack the sober one before exhausting myself upon the other?
Our heroe received the enemy's attack with the most undaunted intrepidity, and his bosom resounded with the blow.
You forget that, stunned by the attack made on her, Mademoiselle Stangerson was not in a condition to have made such an appeal.
Mademoiselle Stangerson had, no doubt, her own reasons for so doing, since she had told her father nothing of it, and had made it understood to the examining magistrate that the attack had taken place in the night, during the second phase.
I no longer doubted that the attack had taken place before Mademoiselle had retired for the night.