Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A light spear thrown with the hand and used as a weapon.
  • noun A metal or metal-tipped spear thrown for distance in track and field competitions. The men's javelin is about 2.6 meters (8 1/2 feet) in length; the women's is about 2.2 meters (7 1/4 feet) in length.
  • noun The athletic field event in which a javelin is thrown.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To strike or wound with or as with a javelin.
  • noun A spear intended to be thrown by the hand, with or without the aid of a thong or a. throwing-stick.
  • noun In heraldry, a bearing representing a short-handled weapon with a barbed head, and so distinguished from a half-spear, which has a lance-head without barbs.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb rare To pierce with a javelin.
  • noun A sort of light spear, to be thrown or cast by the hand; anciently, a weapon of war used by horsemen and foot soldiers; now used chiefly in hunting the wild boar and other fierce game.
  • noun (Sport) A wooden shaft resembling a spear, thrown by contestants in a contest called the javelin throw; the one throwing the javelin furthest wins the contest. The javelin throw is one of the field events of the modern Olympic Games.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A light spear thrown with the hand and used as a weapon.
  • noun A metal-tipped spear thrown for distance in an athletic field event.
  • verb transitive To pierce with a javelin.

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

  • noun an athletic competition in which a javelin is thrown as far as possible
  • noun a spear thrown as a weapon or in competitive field events

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old French javeline, diminutive of javelot, of Celtic origin.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English, from Old French javelline, diminutive of javelot, from Celtic *gablakko- (Old Irish gabul, Welsh gafl). Also borrowed into Middle Low German as gaveline, and into Middle High German as gabilot.

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