Musket
Musket Mus"ket, n. [F. mousquet, It. moschetto, formerly, a kind of hawk; cf. OF. mousket, moschet, a kind of hawk falcon, F. mouchet, prop., a little fly (the hawk prob. being named from its size), fr. L. musca a fly. Cf. {Mosquito}.] [Sometimes written also {musquet}.] 1. (Zo["o]l.) The male of the sparrow hawk. [1913 Webster]

2. A species of firearm formerly carried by the infantry of an army. It was originally fired by means of a match, or matchlock, for which several mechanical appliances (including the flintlock, and finally the percussion lock) were successively substituted. This arm has been completely superseded by the rifle, and is now only of historical interest. [1913 Webster +PJC]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • musket — [mus′kət] n. [MFr mosquet < It moschetto, musket, orig., fledged arrow < mosca, a fly < L musca: see MIDGE] a smoothbore, long barreled firearm, used esp. by infantry soldiers before the invention of the rifle …   English World dictionary

  • musket — (n.) firearm for infantry (later replaced by the rifle), 1580s, from M.Fr. mousquette, also the name of a kind of sparrow hawk, dim. of mosca a fly, from L. musca (see MIDGE (Cf. midge)). The hawk so called either for its size or because it looks …   Etymology dictionary

  • musket — ► NOUN historical ▪ a light gun with a long barrel, typically smooth bored and fired from the shoulder. ORIGIN French mousquet, from Italian moschetto crossbow bolt …   English terms dictionary

  • Musket — Muskets and bayonets aboard the frigate Grand Turk. A musket is a muzzle loaded, smooth bore long gun, fired from the shoulder. Muskets were designed for use by infantry. A soldier armed with a musket had the designation musketman or musketeer.… …   Wikipedia

  • musket — /mus kit/, n. 1. a heavy, large caliber smoothbore gun for infantry soldiers, introduced in the 16th century: the predecessor of the modern rifle. 2. the male sparrow hawk, Accipiter nisus. [1580 90; < MF mousquet < It moschetto crossbow arrow,… …   Universalium

  • musket — UK [ˈmʌskɪt] / US [ˈmʌskət] noun [countable] Word forms musket : singular musket plural muskets a type of long gun used by soldiers before the invention of the rifle …   English dictionary

  • musket — n. hist. an infantryman s (esp. smooth bored) light gun, often supported on the shoulder. Phrases and idioms: musket shot 1 a shot fired from a musket. 2 the range of this shot. Etymology: F mousquet f. It. moschetto crossbow bolt f. mosca fly …   Useful english dictionary

  • musket — noun /mʌskʌt,mʌskɪt/ A species of firearm formerly carried by the infantry of an army. It was originally fired by means of a match, or matchlock, for which several mechanical appliances (including the flintlock, and finally the …   Wiktionary

  • musket — mus|ket [ˈmʌskıt] n [Date: 1500 1600; : French; Origin: mousquet, from Old Italian moschetto arrow, musket , from mosca fly ] a type of gun used in the past …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • musket — [[t]mʌ̱skɪt[/t]] muskets N COUNT A musket was an early type of gun with a long barrel, which was used before rifles were invented …   English dictionary

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