2. To make a satisfactory response or return. Hence: to render account, or to be responsible; to be accountable; to make amends; as, the man must answer to his employer for the money intrusted to his care. Let his neck answer for it, if there is any martial law. (Shak)
3. To be or act in return. Hence: to be or act by way of compliance, fulfillment, reciprocation, or satisfaction; to serve the purpose; as, gypsum answers as a manure on some soils. Do the strings answer to thy noble hand? (Dryden)
to be or act in conformity, or by way of accommodation, correspondence, relation, or proportion; to conform; to correspond; to suit; usually with to. That the time may have all shadow and silence in it, and the place answer to convenience. (Shak) If this but answer to my just belief, i 'll remember you. (Shak) As in water face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man. (pro. Xxvii. 19)
2. To speak or write in return to, as in return to a call or question, or to a speech, decl 1000 aration, argument, or the like; to reply to (a question, remark, etc); to respond to. She answers him as if she knew his mind. (Shak) So spake the apostate angel, though in pain: . . . And him thus answered soon his bold compeer. (Milton)
3. To respond to satisfactorily; to meet successfully by way of explanation, argument, or justification, and the like; to refute. No man was able to answer him a word. (Matt. Xxii. 46) These shifts refuted, answer thine appellant. (Milton) The reasoning was not and could not be answered. (Macaulay)
4. To be or act in return or response to. Hence: to be or act in compliance with, in fulfillment or satisfaction of, as an order, obligation, demand; as, he answered my claim upon him; the servant answered the bell. This proud king . . . Studies day and night to answer all the debts he owes unto you. (Shak)
to render account to or for. I will . . . Send him to answer thee. (Shak)
to atone; to be punished for. And grievously hath Caezar answered it. (Shak)
2. Something said or written in reply to a question, a call, an argument, an address, or the like; a reply. A soft answer turneth away wrath. (Prov. Xv. 1) I called him, but he gave me no answer. (Cant. V. 6)
5. A counter-statement of facts in a course of pleadings; a confutation of what the other party has alleged; a responsive declaration by a witness in reply to a question. In Equity, it is the usual form of defense to the complainant's charges in his bill.
Synonym: Reply, rejoinder, response. See Reply.