poleax

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • v poleax fell with or as if with a poleax
    • n poleax a battle ax used in the Middle Ages; a long handled ax and a pick
    • n poleax an ax used to slaughter cattle; has a hammer opposite the blade
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Poleax Anciently, a kind of battle-ax with a long handle; later, an ax or hatchet with a short handle, and a head variously patterned; -- used by soldiers, and also by sailors in boarding a vessel.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n poleax Formerly, a weapon or tool consisting of an ax-head on a long handle, and often combined with a hook at the end, or a blade like a pick on the side opposite the blade of the ax; later, more loosely, a battle-ax.
    • n poleax A weapon used in the navy by boarders and also to cut away rigging, etc. It is a hatchet with a short handle at the end of which is a strong hook.
    • n poleax An ax for slaughtering cattle.
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Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. pollax,; cf. OD. pollexe,. See Poll head, and Ax

Usage

In literature:

The man fell like an ox beneath the poleaxe.
"Twenty Years After" by Alexandre Dumas, Pere
But, pillage and poleaxes!
"The Cloister and the Hearth" by Charles Reade
He swung the poleaxe that he carried, and the Dutchman went down in blood with a cloven skull.
"Captain Blood" by Rafael Sabatini
Wretched brutes there at the cattlemarket waiting for the poleaxe to split their skulls open.
"Ulysses" by James Joyce
A fierce struggle took place round the market cross, during which Sir John Byron was wounded in the face with a poleaxe.
"A Cotswold Village" by J. Arthur Gibbs
A man is knocked down by the unforeseen blow, like an ox by the poleaxe.
"The Man Who Laughs" by Victor Hugo
What th' butcher done I dinnaw; but annyhow they accused him iv wantin' to poleaxe th' governmint; an' they thrun him into a cell.
"Mr. Dooley: In the Hearts of His Countrymen" by Finley Peter Dunne
And in this way I suppose you larned how to chop with your little poleaxe.
"Guy Rivers: A Tale of Georgia" by William Gilmore Simms
One of the defenders lay dead, with his head cloven to his shoulders with a poleaxe, but another had taken his place.
"The Cornet of Horse" by G. A. Henty
The man himself fell like an ox before the poleaxe, but the rifle flew into two pieces.
"Sixteen Months in Four German Prisons" by Henry Charles Mahoney
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In news:

A friend's husband lost his job, and predictably, this friend is poleaxed.
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