Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Topic: WEAPONS

Date: 1300-1400
Origin: Perhaps from Gunnilda, a woman's name, from Old Norse Gunnhildr

gun

1 noun
     
gun
gun1 S2 W2 [countable]
1PMW a metal weapon which shoots bullets or shells
have/hold/carry a gun
I could see he was carrying a gun.
I've never fired a gun in my life.
Jake was pointing a gun at the door.
Two policemen were killed in a gun battle.
2

put/hold a gun to somebody's head

a) to put a gun very close to someone's head to shoot them or to force them to do something:
He put a gun to her head and told the cashier to hand over the money.
b) to force someone to do something they do not want to do:
You chose to live here. Nobody put a gun to your head.
3DT a tool that forces out small objects or a liquid by pressure:
a paint gun
a nail gun
flashgun, spray gun
4 also starting pistol a gun which is fired into the air at the start of a race
5 American English informal

big/top gun

someone who is very important within an organization:
Jed wanted to impress a Harvard professor and some other big guns.
6

hired gun

American English informal someone who is paid to shoot someone else
7

with all guns blazing

if you do something with all guns blazing, you do it with a lot of energy, determination, and noise
son of a gun

; ➔ stick to your guns

at stick1

; ➔ jump the gun

at jump1 (11)

; ➔ be going great guns

at great1 (11)

; ➔ spike somebody's guns

at spike2 (6)
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