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2017 Word of the Year

backsight

[bak-sahyt] /ˈbækˌsaɪt/
noun, Surveying.
1.
a sight on a previously occupied instrument station.
2.
(in leveling) the reading on a rod that is held on a point of known elevation, used in computing the elevation of the instrument.
Origin of backsight
1840-1850
First recorded in 1840-50; back2 + sight
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for backsight
Historical Examples
  • "Come quick," he shouted, adjusting the backsight of a rifle.

  • The tiny figures seen over the slide of the backsight seemed a little larger, but also fewer at each successive volley.

    The River War Winston S. Churchill
British Dictionary definitions for backsight

backsight

/ˈbækˌsaɪt/
noun
1.
the sight of a rifle nearer the stock
2.
(surveying) a reading taken looking backwards to a previously occupied station Compare foresight (sense 4)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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