percussion cap



a small metallic cap or cup containing fulminating powder, formerly exploded by percussion to fire the charge of small arms.

Origin of percussion cap

First recorded in 1815–25 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for percussion cap

Historical Examples of percussion cap

  • It made about as much noise as a percussion-cap, and the wind was from Brigham toward us.


    Charles Godfrey Leland

  • On so slight an incident—the defect of a percussion-cap—did the battle hinge.

    The Dixie Book of Days

    Matthew Page Andrews

  • He then looked to his percussion-cap, to make sure that all was right.

  • The revolver of the Civil War was, of course, a percussion-cap weapon.

    Rebel Raider

    H. Beam Piper

  • Then he had only to place a percussion-cap on the tube, and he was ready for business.

    Brave Tom

    Edward S. Ellis

British Dictionary definitions for percussion cap

percussion cap


a detonator consisting of a paper or thin metal cap containing material that explodes when struck and formerly used in certain firearms
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