carbine

[ kahr-been, -bahyn ]
/ ˈkɑr bin, -baɪn /

noun

a light, gas-operated semiautomatic rifle.
(formerly) a short rifle used in the cavalry.

RELATED WORDS

Origin of carbine

1595–1605; earlier carabine < Middle French: small harquebus, weapon borne by a carabin a lightly armed cavalryman, compared with (e)scarabin gravedigger for plague victims (< Provençal, akin to French escarbot cockchafer, dung beetle ≪ Latin scarabaeus scarab), though semantic change is unclear
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for carbine

British Dictionary definitions for carbine

carbine

/ (ˈkɑːbaɪn) /

noun

a light automatic or semiautomatic rifle of limited range
Also called: carabin, carabine a light short-barrelled shoulder rifle formerly used by cavalry

Word Origin for carbine

C17: from French carabine, from Old French carabin carabineer, perhaps variant of escarrabin one who prepares corpses for burial, from scarabée, from Latin scarabaeus scarab
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 carbine

carbine


n.

short rifle, 1580s, from French carabine (Middle French carabin), used of light horsemen and also of the weapon they carried, of uncertain origin, perhaps from Medieval Latin Calabrinus "Calabrian" (i.e., "rifle made in Calabria"). A less-likely theory (Gamillscheg, etc.) connects it to Old French escarrabin "corpse-bearer during the plague," literally (probably) "carrion beetle," said to have been an epithet for archers from Flanders.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper