[wop-uh n-shaw, wap-]
  1. a periodic muster or review of troops or persons under arms, formerly held in certain districts of Scotland to satisfy military chiefs that their men were properly armed and faithful to the local lord or chieftain.
Often wap·pen·shaw·ing.

Origin of wappenshaw

1495–1505; short for wappenshawing (Scots), equivalent to wappen (Old English wǣpna, genitive plural of wǣp(e)n weapon) + shawing showing (see show, -ing1); compare Dutch wapenschouwing
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for wappenshaw


  1. (formerly) a muster of men in a particular area in Scotland to show that they were properly armed

Word Origin for wappenshaw

C16: from Northern English wapen, from Old Norse vápn weapon + schaw show
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