bomb

[bom]

noun

verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)


Origin of bomb

1580–90; earlier bom(b)e < Spanish bomba (de fuego) “ball (of fire),” akin to bombo “drum” < Latin bombus “a booming sound” < Greek bómbos
Related formsbomb·a·ble, adjective
Can be confusedbalm bomb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


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British Dictionary definitions for bomb

bomb

noun

  1. a hollow projectile containing an explosive, incendiary, or other destructive substance, esp one carried by aircraft
  2. (as modifier)bomb disposal; a bomb bay
  3. (in combination)a bombload; bombproof
any container filled with explosivea car bomb; a letter bomb
the bomb
  1. a hydrogen or atomic bomb considered as the ultimate destructive weapon
  2. slangsomething excellentit's the bomb
a round or pear-shaped mass of volcanic rock, solidified from molten lava that has been thrown into the air
med a container for radioactive material, applied therapeutically to any part of the bodya cobalt bomb
British slang a large sum of money (esp in the phrase make a bomb)
US and Canadian slang a disastrous failurethe new play was a total bomb
Australian and NZ slang an old or dilapidated motorcar
American football a very long high pass
(in rugby union) another term for up-and-under
like a bomb British and NZ informal with great speed or success; very well (esp in the phrase go like a bomb)

verb

to attack with or as if with a bomb or bombs; drop bombs (on)
(intr; often foll by off, along, etc) informal to move or drive very quickly
(intr) slang to fail disastrously; be a flopthe new play bombed See also bomb out

Word Origin for bomb

C17: from French bombe, from Italian bomba, probably from Latin bombus a booming sound, from Greek bombos, of imitative origin; compare Old Norse bumba drum
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 bomb
n.

1580s, from French bombe, from Italian bomba, probably from Latin bombus "a deep, hollow noise; a buzzing or booming sound," from Greek bombos "deep and hollow sound," echoic. Originally of mortar shells, etc.; modern sense of "explosive device placed by hand or dropped from airplane" is 1909. Meaning "old car" is from 1953. Meaning "success" is from 1954 (late 1990s slang the bomb "the best" is probably a fresh formation); opposite sense of "a failure" is from 1963. The bomb "atomic bomb" is from 1945.

v.

1680s, from bomb (n.). Meaning "to fail" attested from 1963. Related: Bombed; bombing. Slang bombed "drunk" is attested by 1956.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with bomb

bomb

see time bomb.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.