Definitions

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

  • n. A cluster of small iron balls formerly used as a cannon charge.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A cluster, usually nine in number, of small iron balls, put together by means of cast-iron circular plates at top and bottom, with two rings, and a central connecting rod, in order to be used as a charge for a cannon. Formerly grapeshot were inclosed in canvas bags.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A cluster, usually nine in number, of small iron balls, put together by means of cast-iron circular plates at top and bottom, with two rings, and a central connecting rod, in order to be used as a charge for a cannon. Formerly grapeshot were inclosed in canvas bags.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A projectile discharged from a cannon, having much of the destructive spread of case-shot with somewhat of the range and penetrative force of solid shot.

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

  • n. a cluster of small projectiles fired together from a cannon to produce a hail of shot

Etymologies

From its resemblance to a cluster of grapes.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
grape +‎ shot (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • There were three varieties of this: for long-range work (up to 600 yards) a smaller number of larger balls were contained in the tin (sometimes referred to as grapeshot); for closer ranges, more numerous but smaller projectiles were packed into the container (sometimes termed langridge); and a third type, called “bar shot,” consisted of a solid iron bar running down the center of the tin with musket balls packed around it.

    THE CAMPAIGNS OF NAPOLEON

  • Marchons! "and at every word grapeshot fell to the ground, for the Colonel, in spite of the suggestions of war, was peacefully engaged, being seated on the top of a pair of steps thinning out the grapes which hung from the roof.

    Sappers and Miners The Flood beneath the Sea

  • "Armies still use what we could call grapeshot in tank rounds, which fire what is effectively ball bearings.

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  • It would be clean and it would have no magic bullet, only a magic spray of grapeshot (Al Gore called it buckshot) spread across all regions.

    Dar Williams: Blow Your Own Green Bubble

  • Laurence Underhill/eyevine/Zuma Press Protesters threw rocks at lines of police who respond with tear gas and grapeshot on Mansour Street, next to the Interior Ministry building.

    Clashes Escalate in Cairo

  • Yesterday I could not remember the correct word so used grapeshot.

    The James Rifle

  • In short, he got Borked at Leipzig. grapeshot says:

    Matthew Yglesias » Kristol Complicates Napoleon Metaphors

  • A lot of people hoped that basically a whiff of grapeshot would be enough to cause the whole government to collapse, Pollack says of the air campaign.

    Five questions about dramatic move against Gadhafi

  • Something crunched under my denim-ed knee as I checked the warrens for fresh round droppings, grapeshot poo that would tell me whether to bother with this hole or find a new burrow.

    Acceptance

  • As they raked the stranded Alliance with continuous fire, Barry was struck in the shoulder by a heavy piece of iron grapeshot and had to be taken below for emergency surgery.

    The Revolutionary War's Other Naval Hero

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