a child's toy gun from which a pellet is shot by compressed air, producing a loud pop.

Origin of popgun

First recorded in 1655–65; pop1 + gun1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pop-gun

Historical Examples of pop-gun

  • Yulee with the range and the bow and arrows, and Bo with his pop-gun.

  • What can you do with a pop-gun if the foe will not wait until you have taken aim at him?

    Jewish Children

    Sholem Naumovich Rabinovich

  • "Bees," said he, and killed one the next moment with a pop-gun.

    Home Life in Germany

    Mrs. Alfred Sidgwick

  • “Something the matter with your pop-gun, I reckon,” said Jim.

    With Hoops of Steel

    Florence Finch Kelly

  • Rina regarded the weapon in his hands with as little respect as if it had been a pop-gun.

    Two on the Trail

    Hulbert Footner

British Dictionary definitions for pop-gun



a toy gun that fires a pellet or cork by means of compressed air and makes a popping sound
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 pop-gun

type of child's toy, 1620s, from pop (n.1) + gun (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper