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an ancient manual throwing weapon. A sling consisted of a strap made of leather, animal hair, or vegetable fiber with a broader middle part into which a stone or lead ball was placed.
The sling was whirled around the head and the projectile was let fly by releasing one end of the strap. Slings were used in the armies of the ancient world—for instance, in Egypt, Greece, and Rome—and in the Middle Ages. In the 16th and 17th centuries slings were used in Europe to throw grenades.
a load-gripping device, usually of rope or chain and having one or several branches, with a hook, clamp, or loop on the end. Slings sometimes take the form of straps or nets. Automatic slings, having special gripping devices, are used for lashing and unlashing loads in inaccessible places and for gripping containers and pallets. Certain parts of aerostats and parachutes are referred to as suspension lines (or top cords).