Definition of broadside in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈbrɔːdsʌɪd/


1A fierce verbal attack: he launched a broadside against the economic reforms
More example sentences
  • In an apparent bid to save the crumbling alliance, the two men met yesterday at an undisclosed venue in Cape Town after firing public broadsides at each other for over a week.
  • But Berkovic refused to go without a firing a broadside at O'Neill, claiming the Hoops boss ‘did not even speak’ to the former club record signing.
  • He has blown onto the scene in a torrent of invective, firing broadside after broadside at the crumbling bastions of public morality.
attack, assault, onslaught, abuse, battering
informal flak, brickbat
British informal slating
2 historical A firing of all the guns from one side of a warship.
Example sentences
  • To do this they would have to come up alongside our ships leaving them exposed to a broadside from English cannons on our ships.
  • The Monitor proved impervious to the Virginia's broadsides and captured the imaginations of naval officials and the public.
  • HMS Duke of York fired 80 broadsides; and the Allied ships fired a total of 2,195 shells during the engagement.
salvo, volley, cannonade, barrage, blast, bombardment, fusillade, hail of bullets
2.1The set of guns which can fire on each side of a warship.
Example sentences
  • The Confederate broadsides contained fewer guns with each shot and fewer missiles were launched from the attackers.
  • Now within cannon range, the Hurricane and her consorts unmasked their broadsides and hurled a firestorm of plasma cannon fire at the Asp and the remaining corvettes.
  • The battleships opened up their broadsides, and half the alien ships were crushed before their element command could react.
2.2The side of a ship above the water between the bow and quarter.
Example sentences
  • Lining up your shot while not giving your foe a chance at your broadside is a challenge, and having the biggest ship doesn't always ensure victory.
  • A mere five gun ports open across their broadside.
  • Finally… he swooped down, raking the cruiser's starboard broadside with his guns, destroying three of the seven turrets placed there.
3A sheet of paper printed on one side only, forming one large page: a broadside of Lee’s farewell address
More example sentences
  • The story was printed as a broadside - a single sheet of paper about 2ft x 3ft - with high-quality paper and elegant typography.
  • Randall's first publications in 1965 were literally broadsides - single poems printed on large sheets of paper that sold for fifty cents.
  • Most of these were in print and available as broadsides, but that is not the point here: they were ‘traditional’ in the sense of having been in circulation time out of mind, and had not been made up by ballad-mongers between 1800 and 1850.


1With the side turned in a particular direction: the yacht was drifting broadside to the wind
More example sentences
  • If they must, they could turn the wagons broadside to the wind and use them for cover, and their felted tents and sleeping sacks would keep them from freezing to death.
  • I lowered the rifle and saw that he had stopped and was standing broadside looking at us.
  • What makes jack crevalle difficult to land is their tendency while resting to turn broadside to the angler.
1.1On the side: her car was hit broadside by another vehicle
More example sentences
  • One tank barely ten meters from Blaine had taken a shot full broadside.
  • A purplish, long, vaguely cylindrical ship shot up into the air, and rammed him full broadside.
  • Really, it was headed west on the Route 30 Interstate and it negotiated a lane change without signaling and it struck me broadside.


[with object] North American
Collide with the side of (a vehicle): I had to skid my bike sideways to avoid broadsiding her
More example sentences
  • Three years ago, in Arlington Heights, Illinois, Police Officer Chuck Tiedge's squad car was broadsided by a hearse that ran a red light.
  • This one I missed seeing until it was nearly too late, and as I took evasive action I nearly broadsided another car that I was not even aware was there!
  • Caleb Kwan was in a rather serious car accident tonight when his BMW was broadsided by a large truck.


broadside on

Sideways on: the ship swung broadside on to the current of the river
More example sentences
  • A Thai coastal patrol boat caught broadside on by the waves had been tumbled over and over and finished hundreds of yards inshore.
  • Any cyclist crossing the roundabout from Stockton Lane to Heworth Green is in danger of being hit broadside on.
  • She was 135 days out from Tacoma on the west coast of the United States, loaded with grain bound for Falmouth when, in a south-westerly gale, she hit the rock broadside on, her mainyard smashing into the tower.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: broad|side

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