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swashbuckler

[swosh-buhk-ler, swawsh-]
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noun
  1. a swaggering swordsman, soldier, or adventurer; daredevil.
Sometimes swash·er.

Origin of swashbuckler

First recorded in 1550–60; swash + buckler
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for swashbuckler

Historical Examples

  • They kept a swashbuckler court in their little Manx kingdom.

    The Little Manx Nation - 1891

    Hall Caine

  • And what was that swashbuckler Feraud doing there, he wondered.

    A Set of Six

    Joseph Conrad

  • He has in him more of the swashbuckler and the bully than of the courtier and the cavalier.

  • I pick my company, and I refuse to drink with a swashbuckler and a roysterer.

    The Cryptogram

    William Murray Graydon

  • He was a swashbuckler whom Callot would have loved to paint.

    The Duke's Motto

    Justin Huntly McCarthy


British Dictionary definitions for swashbuckler

swashbuckler

noun
  1. a swaggering or flamboyant adventurer
  2. a film, book, play, etc, depicting excitement and adventure, esp in a historical setting

Word Origin

C16: from swash (in the archaic sense: to make the noise of a sword striking a shield) + buckler
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

Word Origin and History for swashbuckler

n.

1550s, "blustering, swaggering fighting man" (earlier simply swash, 1540s), from swash "fall of a blow" (see swash) + buckler "shield." The original sense seems to have been "one who makes menacing noises by striking his or an opponent's shield."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper