[ pohl-aks ]
/ ˈpoʊlˌæks /

noun, plural pole·ax·es [pohl-ak-siz] /ˈpoʊlˌæk sɪz/.

a medieval shafted weapon with blade combining ax, hammer, and apical spike, used for fighting on foot.
an ax, usually with a hammer opposite the cutting edge, used in stunning and slaughtering animals.
an ax with both a blade and a hook, formerly used in naval warfare to assist sailors in boarding vessels.

verb (used with object), pole·axed, pole·ax·ing.

to strike down or kill with or as if with a poleax.

Origin of poleax

1300–50; Middle English pollax battle-ax, literally, head-ax (see poll1, ax); akin to Middle Low German polexe

Definition for poleaxed (2 of 2)

[ pohl-aks ]
/ ˈpoʊlˌæks /

noun, plural pole·ax·es [pohl-ak-siz] /ˈpoʊlˌæk sɪz/, verb (used with object), pole·axed, pole·ax·ing.

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for poleaxed

  • The sentry fell to the ground like a poleaxed steer and lay still.

    The Revolt on Venus|Carey Rockwell
  • I should simply have been poleaxed and dropped overboard, while the yacht sailed away.

  • As if poleaxed, the green man fell; and both the adventurers recovered their feet.

    The Heads of Apex|Francis Flagg
  • And I suppose if we strangled the children and poleaxed the husbands it would leave women free for higher culture.

    All Things Considered|G. K. Chesterton

British Dictionary definitions for poleaxed


US poleax

/ (ˈpəʊlˌæks) /


another term for battle-axe (def. 1)
a former naval weapon with an axe blade on one side of the handle and a spike on the other
an axe used by butchers to slaughter animals


(tr) to hit or fell with or as if with a poleaxe

Word Origin for poleaxe

C14 pollax battle-axe, from poll + axe
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