from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Something that warns.
  • n. A warning-gun; a signal-gun; the discharge of a cannon intended as a notification. Compare piece, 4 .
  • n. In horology, a part of the striking-mechanism of a clock that, by the movement of the lower wheel, throws the striking-system periodically into action. It is also operated by the strike-or-silent mechanism, so that the striking-mechanism may be thrown out of gear at will. When in position to work, it causes a slight noise at the instant of starting the striking-parts, and thus gives warn ing that the clock is about to strike.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • He is not like a hasty creditor, who requires the debt, and gives no time for payment; he shoots off his warning-piece, that he may not shoot off his murdering-piece.

    The Ten Commandments

  • A warning-piece shall be shot off [202] from the tower,

    The Jew of Malta


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