Definition of blunderbuss in English:

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blunderbuss

Pronunciation: /ˈblʌndəbʌs/

noun

Image of blunderbuss
1 historical A short large-bored gun firing balls or slugs.
Example sentences
  • Arrived outside, they collected some blunderbusses, rifles and revolvers, and took up a position behind some sandhills.
  • However, his soldiers now have more primitive weapons, such as blunderbusses, muskets, swords, and repeating crossbows.
  • I should have used a blunderbuss not a derringer.
2An action or way of doing something regarded as lacking in subtlety and precision: economists resort too quickly to the blunderbuss of regulation
More example sentences
  • Revenue are going after people in a blunderbuss approach without making allowances for the fact that some people have inherited this problem.
  • Unfortunately, rather than considering specific solutions, opponents of spam are currently adopting a blunderbuss approach, latching on to every anti-spam technology going in the vain hope that one of them might do the job.
  • Traditional chemistry uses a blunderbuss approach, based on the idea that if you produce 10,000 variations of a drug that seems to work a bit you will probably come up with something that works a bit better.

Origin

Mid 17th century: alteration (by association with blunder) of Dutch donderbus, literally 'thunder gun'.

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