from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An early, crudely made musket.
  • n. A long heavy cannon used in the 16th and 17th centuries.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A kind of handgun.
  • n. A large cannon.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A long cannon of the 16th century, usually an 18-pounder with serpent-shaped handles.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. An early name of the cannon.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a heavy cannon with a long barrel used in the 16th and 17th centuries
  • n. a medieval musket


Middle English, from Old French coulevrine, from couleuvre, snake, from Latin colubra, feminine of coluber.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old French coulevrine, from couleuvre ("snake"), ultimately from Latin colubra, coluber ("snake"). (Wiktionary)


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  • Railroad telegraphers' term meaning cost, duty, and all commissions. --US Railway Association, Standard Cipher Code, 1906.

    January 21, 2013