from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In gunnery, a pointed wire used through the vent of a cannon to prick the cartridge when it is home, and after discharge to extinguish any ignited particles. [Eng.] In the United States service called priming-wire.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • When the gun was loaded the gunner filled the touch-hole with his priming powder, from a horn he carried in his belt, after thrusting a sharp wire, called the priming-iron, down the touch-hole, through the cartridge, so that the priming powder might have direct access to the powder of the charge.

    On the Spanish Main Or, Some English forays on the Isthmus of Darien.

  • "for the cold snuffe into the nosthrill," and priming-iron.

    The Social History of Smoking

  • "Run in the gun, lads; and be smart with it; that's your sort; sponge it well out; that'll do; now in with the cartridge; three strokes with the rammer; now home with the shot; run out the gun again; bear a hand with the priming-iron, you Ned; muzzle to the left -- a little more yet; well with that.

    The Voyage of the Aurora


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