- an early short-barreled pocket pistol.
Origin of derringer
Examples from the Web for derringer
He could see I was losing my temper and took a little pistol from his pocket—a Derringer.The Grell Mystery
He composedly tucked the derringer into his waistcoat pocket again.Desert Dust
Edwin L. Sabin
Doctor Hissong leaped from the stand, a derringer in his hand.
Doctor Hissong brought up his derringer and pulled the trigger.
Derringer: a pistol, so called from the name of the inventor.The Short-story
William Patterson Atkinson
- a short-barrelled pocket pistol of large calibre
Word Origin and History for derringer
1850, for Henry Deringer (1786-1868), U.S. gunsmith who invented it in the 1840s; prevailing misspelled form is how his name appeared on the many counterfeits and imitations. "A small pistol with a large bore, very effective at short range" [OED].