A weapon is something used to hurt someone. Soldiers use weapons like guns and even sometimes use "weapons of mass destruction" — like bombs. In school, the only weapon you should use is a spitball.

A solider engaging in battle needs a weapon, as does a police officer defending herself against a violent attacker. Some weapons are specially designed for killing or injuring, such as guns and crossbows, while in other cases an ordinary object, like a stick, can be used as a weapon. The Old English root is wæpen, "instrument of fighting or defense." The spelling is tricky, and most people just have to memorize the ea in weapon.

Definitions of weapon

n any instrument or instrumentality used in fighting or hunting

“he was licensed to carry a weapon
arm, weapon system
the legendary sword of King Arthur
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a weapon for shooting arrows, composed of a curved piece of resilient wood with a taut cord to propel the arrow
bow and arrow
a weapon consisting of arrows and the bow to shoot them
brass knuckles, brass knucks, knuckle duster, knuckles, knucks
a small metal weapon; worn over the knuckles on the back of the hand
fire ship
a weapon consisting of a ship carrying explosives that is set adrift to destroy enemy ships
a weapon that squirts ignited fuel for several yards
a weapon that discharges a missile at high velocity (especially from a metal tube or barrel)
a weapon with a handle and blade with a sharp point
light arm
a rifle or pistol
a rocket carrying a warhead of conventional or nuclear explosives; may be ballistic or directed by remote control
medieval weapon consisting of a spearhead attached to a long pole or pikestaff; superseded by the bayonet
missile, projectile
a weapon that is forcibly thrown or projected at a targets but is not self-propelled
a weapon (a sword or dagger) used for slashing
a simple weapon consisting of a looped strap in which a projectile is whirled and then released
lance, shaft, spear
a long pointed rod used as a tool or weapon
stun baton, stun gun
a weapon designed to disable a victim temporarily by delivering a nonlethal high-voltage electric shock
blade, brand, steel, sword
a cutting or thrusting weapon that has a long metal blade and a hilt with a hand guard
hatchet, tomahawk
weapon consisting of a fighting ax; used by North American Indians
W.M.D., WMD, weapon of mass destruction
a weapon that kills or injures civilian as well as military personnel (nuclear and chemical and biological weapons)
Greek fire
a mixture used by Byzantine Greeks that was often shot at adversaries; catches fire when wetted
air gun, air rifle, airgun
a gun that propels a projectile by compressed air
air-to-air missile
a missile designed to be launched from one airplane at another
air-to-ground missile, air-to-surface missile
a missile designed to be launched from an airplane at a target on the ground
ack-ack, ack-ack gun, antiaircraft, antiaircraft gun, flack, flak, pom-pom
artillery designed to shoot upward at airplanes
a projectile with a straight thin shaft and an arrowhead on one end and stabilizing vanes on the other; intended to be shot from a bow
assagai, assegai
the slender spear of the Bantu-speaking people of Africa
a sword with only one cutting edge
ballistic missile
a missile that is guided in the first part of its flight but falls freely as it approaches target
a knife that can be fixed to the end of a rifle and used as a weapon
bioarm, biological weapon, bioweapon
any weapon usable in biological warfare
boomerang, throw stick, throwing stick
a curved piece of wood; when properly thrown will return to thrower
a gun that is loaded at the breech
a sword with a broad blade and (usually) two cutting edges; used to cut rather than stab
bullet, slug
a projectile that is fired from a gun
heavy automatic gun fired from an airplane
heavy gun fired from a tank
cannon ball, cannonball, round shot
a solid projectile that in former times was fired from a cannon
cavalry sword, saber, sabre
a stout sword with a curved blade and thick back
chemical weapon
chemical substances that can be delivered using munitions and dispersal devices to cause death or severe harm to people and animals and plants
a bow fixed transversely on a wooden stock grooved to direct the arrow (quarrel)
Cupid's bow
a curved bow with reversed curve ends
cutlas, cutlass
a short heavy curved sword with one edge; formerly used by sailors
dagger, sticker
a short knife with a pointed blade used for piercing or stabbing
a small narrow pointed missile that is thrown or shot
a short broad slightly convex medieval sword with a sharp point
fencing sword
a sword used in the sport of fencing
firearm, piece, small-arm
a portable gun
gas gun
a gun that fires gas shells
guided missile
a rocket-propelled missile whose path can be controlled during flight either by radio signals or by internal homing devices
a pike fitted with an ax head
a bow drawn by hand as distinguished from a crossbow
heat-seeking missile
a missile with a guidance system that directs it toward targets emitting infrared radiation (as the emissions of a jet engine)
a spear thrown as a weapon or in competitive field events
a curved steel knife with a razor-sharp edge used in combat by the Gurkhas; has cultural and religious significance in Nepal
a powerful wooden bow drawn by hand; usually 5-6 feet long; used in medieval England
machete, matchet, panga
a large heavy knife used in Central and South America as a weapon or for cutting vegetation
minute gun
(military) gun that is discharged once every minute (usually as part of a military funeral)
atomic weapon, nuclear weapon
a weapon of mass destruction whose explosive power derives from a nuclear reaction
partisan, partizan
a pike with a long tapering double-edged blade with lateral projections; 16th and 17th centuries
Quaker gun
a dummy gun or piece of artillery made usually of wood
rapier, tuck
a straight sword with a narrow blade and two edges
a missile equipped with a device that is attracted toward some kind of emission (heat or light or sound or radio waves)
set gun, spring gun
a gun that is set to fire on any intruder that comes in contact with the wire that sets it off
a knife used as a weapon
pellet, shot
a solid missile discharged from a firearm
air-to-air missile with infrared homing device
a projectile made by chewing a piece of paper and shaping it into a sphere
trench knife
a knife with a double-edged blade for hand-to-hand fighting
a spear with three prongs
a kind of pike used by foot soldiers in the 14th century
whaling gun
a gun (or device resembling a gun) for discharging a projectile (especially a harpoon) at a whale
a long Turkish knife with a curved blade having a single edge
high explosive
a powerful chemical explosive that produces gas at a very high rate
Type of:
a device that requires skill for proper use

n a means of persuading or arguing

“he used all his conversational weapons
Type of:
persuasion, suasion
the act of persuading (or attempting to persuade); communication intended to induce belief or action

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