definitions
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sledgehammer

[ slej-ham-er ]
/ ˈslɛdʒˌhæm ər /
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noun

a large heavy hammer wielded with both hands.

verb (used with or without object)

to hammer, beat, or strike with or as if with a sledgehammer.

adjective

crudely or ruthlessly forceful; lacking all dexterity or grace: the artist's sledgehammer approach.

Nearby words

sled cultivator, sled dog, sledder, sledding, sledge, sledgehammer, sleek, sleeked, sleekit, sleekly, sleeky

Origin of sledgehammer

First recorded in 1485–95; sledge2 + hammer
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for sledgehammer

British Dictionary definitions for sledgehammer

sledgehammer

/ (ˈslɛdʒˌhæmə) /

noun

a large heavy hammer with a long handle used with both hands for heavy work such as forging iron, breaking rocks, etc
(modifier) resembling the action of a sledgehammer in power, ruthlessness, etca sledgehammer blow

verb

(tr) to strike (something) with or as if with a sledgehammer

Word Origin for sledgehammer

C15 sledge, from Old English slecg a large hammer; related to Old Norse sleggja, Middle Dutch slegge
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 sledgehammer

sledgehammer


n.

late 15c., from sledge (n.1) + hammer (n.). As a verb, from 1834. Old English had slegebytel "hammer," from beetle (n.2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper