Etymology
Advertisement
gunboat (n.)

also gun-boat, "small boat fitted with guns for service inshore or up rivers," 1793, from gun (n.) + boat (n.). Gunboat diplomacy is from 1916, originally with reference to Western policies in China.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
unlimber (v.)

1760, "to free (a gun) from its limber," usually for the purpose of bringing it into action, from un- (2) "opposite of" + limber "attach a gun to its limber" (see limber (n.)). Figurative sense is attested from 1864. Related: Unlimbered; unlimbering.

Related entries & more 
scattershot (adj.)

1959, figurative use of term for a kind of gun charge meant to broadly spread the pellets when fired (1940), from scatter (v.) + shot (n.). Scatter-gun "shotgun" dates to 1836.

Related entries & more 
stupefy (v.)

early 15c., from Latin stupefacere "make stupid or senseless, benumb, stun," from stupere "be stunned" (see stupid) + facere "to make, to do" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put").

Related entries & more 
astonish (v.)

c. 1300, astonien, "to stun, strike senseless," from Old French estoner "to stun, daze, deafen, astound," from Vulgar Latin *extonare, from Latin ex "out" (see ex-) + tonare "to thunder" (see thunder (n.)); so, literally "to leave someone thunderstruck." The modern form (influenced by English verbs in -ish, such as distinguish, diminish) is attested from 1520s. The meaning "amaze, shock with wonder" is from 1610s.

No wonder is thogh that she were astoned [Chaucer, "Clerk's Tale"]

Related: Astonished; astonishing.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
rifle (v.2)

in gun-making, "to cut spiral grooves in" (the bore of a gun barrel), 1630s, probably from French rifler, from Old French rifler "to scratch or groove" (see rifle (v.1)). Related: Rifled; rifling.

Related entries & more 
blunderbuss (n.)

"short, large-bore gun or firearm with a funnel-shaped muzzle," 1650s, from Dutch donderbus, from donder "thunder" (Middle Dutch doner, donder, from Proto-Germanic *thunaraz; see thunder (n.)) + bus "gun" (originally "box, tube"); altered by resemblance to blunder. Related: Blunderbussier.

Related entries & more 
gunning (n.)

1560s, "science of firing guns;" 1620s, "shooting," verbal noun from gun (v.).

Related entries & more 
Mauser 

type of German army rifle, by 1874; it was introduced 1871, having been invented by brothers Peter Paul (1838-1914) and Wilhelm (1834-1882) Mauser.

After many and most varied experiments, the supreme military authorities of the German empire have now finally decided to supply the whole of the German army—with the exception of the Bavarians, who have a most excellent weapon already in the Werder gun—with a gun of a new pattern, made by a Würtemberg gunsmith of the name of Mauser, who lives at Oberndorf. This new pattern is called the Mauser gun or rifle. This Mauser gun is said to be in every way vastly superior to the chassepot. [G.L.M. Strauss, "Men Who Have Made the New German Empire," London, 1875]
Related entries & more 
handgun (n.)

mid-14c., of unmounted firearms, from hand (n.) + gun (n.). In modern use, "a pistol," from 1930s, American English.

Related entries & more 

Page 3