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1. a blade that can be attached to the muzzle of a rifle for stabbing in close combat.
2. a type of fastening in which a cylindrical member is inserted into a socket against spring pressure and turned so that pins on its side engage in slots in the socket
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a cold-steel thrusting weapon, affixed to the barrel of a firearm (since the 1800’s, a rifle, carbine, or automatic weapon) for hand-to-hand fighting. The bayonet appeared in the mid-1600’s in France (where it received its name). Originally it was a shortened spear that was driven into the bore of a gun barrel; by the late 1600’s bayonets were made entirely of metal with a sleeve that fitted tightly over the gun barrel, which permitted loading and firing with the bayonet in place. The bayonet was adopted by Russia in the early 1700’s. Various armies have used bayonets with three or four faces as well as blades, both detachable and nondetachable.

After World War II, Soviet troops were equipped with a bayonet-knife having a flat blade with teeth on one side, a hand grip by which the weapon could be attached to a gun, and a sheath; the bayonet-knife could also be used as a saw.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


An edged steel blade with a tapered point and a formed handle with an underhand grip, designed to be attached to the muzzle end of a rifle, shotgun, or the like for use in hand-to-hand combat.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
I mentioned that I like the ability to mount a bayonet. I have a 590A1 I acquired a few years ago that came with an M9 bayonet.
But my sergeant shot the fellow and then hoisted me off the bayonet.
In frustration, I bayonet charged the tin; "Conduct prejudicial to military discipline"; For a bayonet's meant to kill one's fellow man, Not punch holes in a condensed milk can.
His fierce determination in bayonet training in the sub-zero temperatures of rural Estonia shows he's lost none of the grit which brought him into the army.
Great-grandmother Gertie was handed the bayonet by her dad, Frank Webster, who served in the trenches of northern France.
"One had two carpet runners in his hand and the pulled out a long army bayonet.
Tv battlefield expert Andy Robertshaw will be talking bombs, bullets and bayonets on a return visit to a North East museum.
Intelligence gathered since the bayonet charge suggests it shocked the militia fighters, who expected the outnumbered Scots to flee.
Maesdu A,Bayonet Scratch League Division One runners-up, withConwy captain Guy Watson (left),and Caernarfonshire & District chairman David Sawyer (right)at a presentation day held at Conwy to round off the league season on Sunday; Eilir Angel topped the individual stakes in Bayonet Scratch League Division Three
Another dated May 17, 1915, reads: "By the time you receive my letter my regiment will be leading a bayonet charge with the hopes of breaking through the German lines.
Unfortunately, the M38 was not compatible with a bayonet. Prompted by increasingly prevalent urban combat, it was modified in 1944 to include a permanent, folding cruciform spike-type bayonet and finger grooves in the stock.
Facing certain death at the hands of the German infantry Tommy was stabbed by a bayonet but as if by miracle a prayer book he kept in his uniform muffled the blow and saved his life.