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See more synonyms for broadside on Thesaurus.com
  1. the whole side of a ship above the water line, from the bow to the quarter.
  2. Navy.
    1. all the guns that can be fired from one side of a warship.
    2. a simultaneous discharge of all the guns on one side of a warship.
  3. any strong or comprehensive attack, as by criticism.
  4. Also called broadsheet.
    1. a sheet of paper printed on one or both sides, as for distribution or posting.
    2. any printed advertising circular.
  5. any broad surface or side, as of a house.
  6. Also called broadside ballad. a song, chiefly in 16th- and 17th-century England, written on a topical subject, printed on broadsides, and sung in public, as on a street corner, by a professional balladeer.
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  1. with the side, especially with the broader side, facing toward a given point or object: The truck hit the fence broadside.
  2. in a wide-ranging manner; at random: to attack the president's policies broadside.
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verb (used without object), broad·sid·ed, broad·sid·ing.
  1. to proceed or go broadside.
  2. to fire a broadside or broadsides.
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verb (used with object), broad·sid·ed, broad·sid·ing.
  1. to collide with or run into the side of (a vehicle, object, person, etc.): We got broadsided on the freeway.
  2. to make concerted verbal attacks on: The president was broadsided by the opposition.
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Origin of broadside

First recorded in 1565–75; broad + side1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for broadside

pamphlet, booklet, journal, manual, daily, brochure, paper, periodical, newspaper, newsletter, weekly, handout, leaflet, flyer, tract, folder, bulletin, placard, sign, billboard

Examples from the Web for broadside

Contemporary Examples of broadside

Historical Examples of broadside

  • I should care nothing for her and her broadside if the schooner was not here.'

  • Besides, by breaking the circuit I can take off the influence when I am firing my own broadside.

  • He fired his first broadside before his lodger entered the barn.

    Fair Harbor

    Joseph Crosby Lincoln

  • Sharp, shrewd, able and all that, but rough and hard as the broadside of a white-oak plank.

    Fair Harbor

    Joseph Crosby Lincoln

  • The mate's gun was never fired, nor was the broadside from below.

    The Sea-Hawk

    Raphael Sabatini

British Dictionary definitions for broadside


  1. nautical the entire side of a vessel, from stem to stern and from waterline to rail
  2. navy
    1. all the armament fired from one side of a warship
    2. the simultaneous discharge of such armament
  3. a strong or abusive verbal or written attack
  4. Also called: broadside ballad a ballad or popular song printed on one side of a sheet of paper and sold by hawkers, esp in 16th-century England
  5. any standard size of paper before cutting or foldingdemy broadside
  6. another name for broadsheet (def. 1)
  7. a large flat surfacethe broadside of the barn
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  1. with a broader side facing an object; sidewaysthe train hit the lorry broadside
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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 broadside


1590s, "side of a ship" (technically, "the side of a ship above the water, between the bow and the quarter"), from broad (adj.) + side (n.); thus "the artillery on one side of a ship all fired off at once" (1590s, with figurative extensions). Two words until late 18c. Of things other than ships, 1630s. But oldest-recorded sense in English is "sheet of paper printed only on one side" (1570s).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper