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[shas-poh; French shas-poh] /ˈʃæs poʊ; French ʃasˈpoʊ/
noun, plural chassepots
[shas-pohz; French shas-poh] /ˈʃæs poʊz; French ʃasˈpoʊ/ (Show IPA)
a breechloading rifle, closed with a sliding bolt, introduced into the French army after 1866.
Origin of chassepot
1865-70; named after A. A. Chassepot (1833-1905), French mechanic, who invented it Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for chassepot
Historical Examples
  • He was collecting chassepots, and received five sous for every chassepot he brought in.

    The Downfall Emile Zola
  • A soldier placing his chassepot at his ear blew out his brains.

  • chassepot, shas′po, n. the kind of bolt-action breechloading rifle adopted by the French army in 1866.

  • Here and there a rifleman stood, his chassepot resting on the iron railing, his face turned towards the woods.

    Lorraine Robert W. Chambers
  • Its only tenant was a sentinel, yellow with jaundice, who seized his chassepot with shaking hands and called a shrill "Qui Vive?"

    Lorraine Robert W. Chambers
  • "The countersign," reiterated the garde, still holding his chassepot in the previous threatening manner.

  • Though doubtful of his ability to "tell at sight a chassepot rifle from a javelin," I was in no way surprised.

    Sonia Between two Worlds Stephen McKenna
  • Odious repetition of those words, "Order reigns in Warsaw," and "The chassepot has done wonders."

  • An officer ascended the steps, approached the corpse, and discharged his chassepot into the left temple.

  • The Commission of Pardons awaited, chassepot in hand, the prey given up to them by the courts-martial.

British Dictionary definitions for chassepot


/ˈʃæspəʊ; French ʃaspo/
a breech-loading bolt-action rifle formerly used by the French Army
Word Origin
C19: named after A. A. Chassepot (1833–1905), French gunsmith who invented it
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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Word Origin and History for chassepot

bolt-action breechloading rifle used by French forces in the Franco-Prussian War, 1870, named for French inventor Antonine-Alphonse Chassepot (1833-1905).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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