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[bahr-bet] /bɑrˈbɛt/
(within a fortification) a platform or mound of earth from which guns may be fired over the parapet instead of through embrasures.
Navy. an armored cylinder for protecting the lower part of a turret on a warship.
Origin of barbette
1765-75; < French, equivalent to barbe beard + -ette -ette, probably from the general metaphorical use of barbe for something which protrudes or faces outward


[bahr-bet] /bɑrˈbɛt/
a female given name, form of Barbara. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for barbette
Historical Examples
  • All we have to do is to get her off, bend on a sail or two, and head her for Bonacca or barbette.

  • Major Anderson replied with his barbette guns from the fort.

    Robert Toombs Pleasant A. Stovall
  • Each of these ships had a barbette armed with a 10-inch gun fore and aft.

    Famous Sea Fights John Richard Hale
  • Rope mantlets are used on the breeches of some of the barbette guns.

    Pictures of Southern Life William Howard Russell
  • With her barbette guns she sat as low in the water as a whaler.

    Avarice-Anger: Eugne Sue
  • The cannon were well mounted, and placed in barbette and embrasure.

    Martyria Augustus C. Hamlin
  • Go in, and say to his wife: 'Good-day, Becaniere,' and barbette will hide you.

    The Chouans Honore de Balzac
  • The room in which she waited for barbette was the whole house.

    The Chouans Honore de Balzac
  • barbette again took his hand, grasped it violently, and dragged him into the house.

    The Chouans Honore de Balzac
  • Hulot was saying to barbette, who had sought him out as soon as she had reached Fougeres.

    The Chouans Honore de Balzac
British Dictionary definitions for barbette


(formerly) an earthen platform inside a parapet, from which heavy guns could fire over the top
an armoured cylinder below a turret on a warship that protects the revolving structure and foundation of the turret
Word Origin
C18: from French, diminutive of barbe a nun's barb1, from a fancied similarity between the earthwork around a cannon and this part of a nun's habit
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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