- (esp. in baseball) a player’s throwing arm.
- guns,the biceps or triceps of the arms: his big, muscular guns.
verb (used with object), gunned, gun·ning.
verb (used without object), gunned, gun·ning.
- to seek with intent to harm or kill.
- to seek; try earnestly to obtain: He is gunning for a raise.
- to begin a race before the starting signal.
- to begin prematurely; act too hastily.
Origin of gun1
Examples from the Web for gunned
Contemporary Examples of gunned
Alpha Team was killed, Faal told the FBI, while the Bravo members who were not gunned down fled.The Shadowy U.S. Veteran Who Tried to Overthrow a Country
January 6, 2015
Gurley was gunned down on Nov. 20, when a pair of cops was patrolling the rough housing project.Protesters Demand Justice For Gurley As Gap Grows Between Cops and NYC
December 28, 2014
A 28-year-old gunned down in a dark, New York City hallway by a rookie cop who apparently made a fatal mistake.Raging Protesters Set Ferguson on Fire
November 25, 2014
He was gunned down the next year, at the age of 26, under mysterious circumstances.America’s Fastest Growing Death Holiday Is From Mexico
November 1, 2014
One of the other activists attempted to escape and was gunned down.Mexico’s First Lady of Murder Is on the Lam
October 29, 2014
Historical Examples of gunned
She waved it wildly, then gunned the boat around neatly so that it slid into the dock.The Caves of Fear
Daniel Mauser was only 15 years old when he was gunned down at Columbine.
Stan gunned the engines and they caught, bursting into a perfect and unbroken stream of power.A Yankee Flier in Italy
Rutherford G. Montgomery
"Guess I gunned my new skin-diving jet a bit too hard," Tom said sheepishly.Tom Swift and the Electronic Hydrolung
It came, and they gunned their engines together and went rocketing forward.Dave Dawson with the Commandos
R. Sidney Bowen
- having a gun or guns as specifiedheavily gunned
- (in combination)three-gunned
- a weapon with a metallic tube or barrel from which a missile is discharged, usually by force of an explosion. It may be portable or mounted. In a military context the term applies specifically to a flat-trajectory artillery piece
- (as modifier)a gun barrel
- an expert
- (as modifier)a gun shearer; a gun batsman
- (of a runner, etc) to set off before the starting signal is given
- informalto act prematurely
verb guns, gunning or gunned
Word Origin for gun
mid-14c., gunne "an engine of war that throws rocks, arrows or other missiles," probably a shortening of woman's name Gunilda, found in Middle English gonnilde "cannon" and in an Anglo-Latin reference to a specific gun from a 1330 munitions inventory of Windsor Castle ("...una magna balista de cornu quae Domina Gunilda ..."), from Old Norse Gunnhildr, woman's name, from gunnr + hildr, both meaning "war, battle." First element from PIE *gwhen- "to strike, kill" (see bane); for second, cf. Hilda.
The identification of women with powerful weapons is common historically (cf. Big Bertha, Brown Bess, Mons Meg, etc.); meaning shifted with technology, from cannons to firearms as they developed 15c. Great guns (cannon, etc.) distinguished from small guns (such as muskets) from c.1400. Applied to pistols and revolvers after 1744. Meaning "thief, rascal" is from 1858. Son of a gun is originally nautical. To jump the gun (1912, American English) is from track and field. Guns "a woman's breasts" (especially if prominent) attested by 2006.
"to shoot with a gun," 1620s, from gun (n.); the sense of "to accelerate an engine" is from 1930, from earlier phrase to give (something) the gun. Related: Gunned; gunning.
In addition to the idiom beginning with gun
- gun for
- gung ho
- at gunpoint
- big cheese (gun)
- great guns
- hired gun
- hold a gun to someone's head
- jump the gun
- smoking gun
- son of a bitch (gun)
- stick to one's guns
- under the gun