Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Word: Gun

Origin: Gunpowder weapons first appeared in Western Europe in the 1320's, and the first English text to use the term gun is dated 1339. However, words like gunne, gonne, et al goes back further, describing mechanical siege engines. According to Bert S. Hall, this stems from the practise of naming such engines with the Old Norse female name Gunhilda (gunn-r means war and hild-r means battle). Later the word gun became intermixed or confused with the word gin (from engine) and was used as a generic term meaning any sort of siege engine.

Source: Bert S. Hall, Weapons & Warfare in Renaissance Europe, Baltimore 1997


  1. thanks Harald. Thought provoking . . .

  2. I'm glad you found it interesting, mum. As you can see, things are a little slow over here atm. Summer has come upon us, and with vacations, outdoorsy activities and what have you, we're not playing that much these days.

    I hope you're having a warm and lazy summer wherever it is that you are :)