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Related to pistol: Glock


see small armssmall arms,
firearms designed primarily to be carried and fired by one person and, generally, held in the hands, as distinguished from heavy arms, or artillery. Early Small Arms

The first small arms came into general use at the end of the 14th cent.
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an individual firearm designed to hit enemy personnel at distances of up to 50–70 m. It can be fired with one hand. Pistols are issued to officers as well as to some enlisted specialists.

Matchlock pistols appeared in Europe and Asia in the 16th century. The first pistols were shortened muskets, which were used primarily in the cavalry. In the 17th century, flintlock pistols became widespread in various armies. In the 19th century, percussion-type pistols were popular. Pistols were made with two or more barrels to increase the rate of fire. Until the mid-19th century most pistols had smooth bores and were muzzle-loaded. In the 1850’s a more refined weapon, the rifled revolver, began to replace pistols. After the invention of smokeless powder in the 1880’s and the use of fixed ammunitions with metallic cartridge cases, automatic pistols appeared. With their automatic reloading, cocking of the trigger mechanism after each shot, and rapidly replaceable magazines, these weapons had a higher maximum rate of fire than revolvers and gradually replaced them.

The automatic feature of pistols is based on a quick movement of the bolt or barrel caused by recoil. Pistols have safety mechanisms for protection in handling.

There are also signal pistols, which are nonautomatic and fire signal and illumination cartridges, and sport pistols, which are automatic.


Material’naia chast’strelkovogo oruzhiia, books 1–2. Moscow, 1945–46.
Gnatovskii, N. I., and P. A. Shorin. Istoriia razvitiia otechestvennogo strelkovogo oruzhiia. 1959.
Vooruzhennye sily kapitalisticheskikh gosudarstv. Moscow, 1971.


What does it mean when you dream about a pistol?

To take aim with a pistol may indicate the dreamer is trying to target a specific goal. Alternatively, if feelings of anger or helplessness and fear play a part in the dream, then the dreamer’s sense of self-defense is at stake and the pistol may represent the power the dreamer needs to defend against some anger or aggression in waking life.


A short automatic or semiautomatic firearm aimed and fired from one hand, using the force of recoil to eject the empty shell and to insert a new round into the firing chamber.


knight of the “killing tongue and quiet sword.” [Br. Lit.: II Henry IV]


[IBM] A tool that makes it all too easy for you to shoot yourself in the foot. "Unix "rm *" makes such a nice pistol!"
References in classic literature ?
He drew up his pistol, examined it, pointed it towards that point in the defile where the first man would appear.
Under that, the miscellany began--a quadrant, a tin canikin, several sticks of tobacco, two brace of very handsome pistols, a piece of bar silver, an old Spanish watch and some other trinkets of little value and mostly of foreign make, a pair of compasses mounted with brass, and five or six curious West Indian shells.
Monte Cristo took the pistols he held in his hand when Mercedes entered, and fixing an ace of clubs against the iron plate, with four shots he successively shot off the four sides of the club.
On perceiving the cavaliers, D'Artagnan had stopped and charged his pistol afresh; besides, his horse, he found, had a carbine on the bow of the saddle.
The besieged made no answer; he was no doubt reloading his pistol.
And Rattray was in the room, a silver-mounted pistol in each hand; the sight of these was a surprise to his treacherous confederates, as even I could see.
Now listen and learn; in the first place buy good powder, not damp (they say it mustn't be at all damp, but very dry), some fine kind it is--you must ask for PISTOL powder, not the stuff they load cannons with.
D'Artagnan seized a pistol and cocked it, hoping that the double click of the spring would stop his enemy.
He remembered the expression Dolokhov's face assumed in his moments of cruelty, as when tying the policeman to the bear and dropping them into the water, or when he challenged a man to a duel without any reason, or shot a post-boy's horse with a pistol.
He placed Smith-Oldwick, with his pistol, at the north opening of their haven and told Otobu to stand with his spear at the Englishman's shoulder, while he himself prepared to guard the southern approach.
I thought it was Shea returning to speak with me on some matter of tomorrow's work; but when I raised my eyes to the doorway that connects the two rooms I saw framed there the figure of a bronzed giant, his otherwise naked body trapped with a jewel-encrusted harness from which there hung at one side an ornate short-sword and at the other a pistol of strange pattern.
I did not have to look at it to know that it was a heavy pistol.