- a light, gas-operated semiautomatic rifle.
- (formerly) a short rifle used in the cavalry.
Origin of carbine
Examples from the Web for carbine
Will he get his carbine free before I reach him, or can I kill him first?The Real Memorial Day: Oliver Wendell Holmes's Salute To A Momentous American Anniversary
May 26, 2014
As you can see on your screens, this young soldier is trying to strangle me with the barrel of his carbine.This 1979 Novel Predicted Putin’s Invasion Of Crimea
May 18, 2014
Washington pointed to Brown, who was kneeling beside him reloading his carbine, and said, “This is Osawatomie.”When Robert E. Lee Met John Brown and Saved the Union
May 15, 2014
Also, by carrying an M-4 carbine, everybody knew I was carrying something that could stitch even U.S. body armor.Don’t Arm America: A Soldier’s Reply to Connecticut Shooting
December 18, 2012
A chorus of night cries awoke to the sharp crack of a carbine.The Law-Breakers
At last, by a sudden jerk, he succeeded in wresting his carbine from him.The Fortune of the Rougons
But even if you had missed I had him covered with my carbine.The Night Riders
As they approached the tan-vats he espied a carbine lying on the ground.Three Years in the Federal Cavalry
Lately, too, we have gone through a course of carbine instruction.The Traitors
E. Phillips (Edward Phillips) Oppenheim
- a light automatic or semiautomatic rifle of limited range
- Also called: carabin, carabine a light short-barrelled shoulder rifle formerly used by cavalry
Word Origin and History for carbine
short rifle, 1580s, from French carabine (Middle French carabin), used of light horsemen and also of the weapon they carried, of uncertain origin, perhaps from Medieval Latin Calabrinus "Calabrian" (i.e., "rifle made in Calabria"). A less-likely theory (Gamillscheg, etc.) connects it to Old French escarrabin "corpse-bearer during the plague," literally (probably) "carrion beetle," said to have been an epithet for archers from Flanders.