• In the salt water wuz sharks, torpedoes, dog fishes, goose-fishes, weak-fish
    In the salt water wuz sharks, torpedoes, dog fishes, goose-fishes, weak-fish
  • WordNet 3.6
    • v torpedo attack or hit with torpedoes
    • n torpedo any sluggish bottom-dwelling ray of the order Torpediniformes having a rounded body and electric organs on each side of the head capable of emitting strong electric discharges
    • n torpedo armament consisting of a long cylindrical self-propelled underwater projectile that detonates on contact with a target
    • n torpedo a small explosive device that is placed on a railroad track and fires when a train runs over it; the sound of the explosion warns the engineer of danger ahead
    • n torpedo a small firework that consists of a percussion cap and some gravel wrapped in paper; explodes when thrown forcefully against a hard surface
    • n torpedo an explosive device that is set off in an oil well (or a gas well) to start or to increase the flow of oil (or gas)
    • n torpedo a large sandwich made of a long crusty roll split lengthwise and filled with meats and cheese (and tomato and onion and lettuce and condiments); different names are used in different sections of the United States
    • n torpedo a professional killer who uses a gun
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Search light on torpedo boat Search light on torpedo boat

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Killer whales (Orcas) kill sharks by torpedoeing up into the shark;s stomach from underneath causing the shark to explode.
    • Torpedo (Railroad) A kind of detonating cartridge or shell placed on a rail, and exploded when crushed under the locomotive wheels, -- used as an alarm signal.
    • Torpedo A kind of firework in the form of a small ball, or pellet, which explodes when thrown upon a hard object.
    • Torpedo (Mil) A kind of shell or cartridge buried in earth, to be exploded by electricity or by stepping on it; now called land mine.
    • Torpedo A kind of small submarine boat carrying an explosive charge, and projected from a ship against another ship at a distance, or made self-propelling, and otherwise automatic in its action against a distant ship.
    • Torpedo A quantity of explosives anchored in a channel, beneath the water, or set adrift in a current, and so designed that they will explode when touched or approached by a vessel, or when an electric circuit is closed by an operator on shore; now called marine mine.
    • Torpedo An automobile with a torpedo body.
    • Torpedo An engine or machine for destroying ships by blowing them up; a mine{4}.
    • Torpedo An explosive cartridge or shell lowered or dropped into a bored oil well, and there exploded, to clear the well of obstructions or to open communication with a source of supply of oil.
    • Torpedo (Zoöl) Any one of numerous species of elasmobranch fishes belonging to Torpedo and allied genera. They are related to the rays, but have the power of giving electrical shocks. Called also crampfish, and numbfish. See Electrical fish, under Electrical.
    • Torpedo to destroy by, or subject to the action of, a torpedo.
    • Torpedo To destroy, cause to halt, or prevent from being accomplished; -- used esp. with reference to a plan or an enterprise, halted by some action before the plan is put into execution.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • torpedo In sinking oil-wells in a petroleum district, to explode a charge of nitroglycerin at the bottom of (the drilled well) in order to shatter the rock and increase the flow of oil. Charges of from 20 to 80 quarts of the explosive are frequently used, and are contained in tin-plate cases, which are carefully lowered into position and exploded by the dropping of a heavy iron cylinder from above.
    • n torpedo A fish of the genus Torpedo or family Torpedinidæ; an electric ray; a cramp-fish or numb-fish.
    • n torpedo The typical genus of the family Torpedinidæ. It is now restricted to electric rays whose trunk is very broad and disk-like, evenly rounded in front and on the sides, and abruptly contracted at the tail, whose caudal fin is well developed, and which have two dorsals, large separate ventrals, and the skin perfectly smooth. They are large rays, chiefly of Atlantic waters, T. occidentalis, which is found along the Atlantic coast of North America, though not very common there, attains a length of about five feet; it is nearly uniform blackish above, and white below. T. californica, of the opposite coast, is a spotted species.
    • n torpedo An explosive device belonging to either of two distinct classes of submarine destructive agents used in war—namely, torpedoes proper, which are propelled against an enemy's ship, and more or less stationary submarine mines, placed where a hostile vessel would be likely to come within range of their destructive effect. Of the first class, called also offensive torpedoes, there are three principal types: the locomotive or automobile torpedo, which class includes the Whitehead and many other patterns generally designated by the name of the inventor.
    • n torpedo Hence, some other explosive agent. Specifically
    • n torpedo In medicine, narcosis; stupor.
    • torpedo To attack with torpedoes; explode a torpedo under or in.
    • torpedo To use or explode torpedoes.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Torpedo tor-pē′do a genus of cartilaginous fishes of family Torpedinidæ, related to the skates and rays, with electric organs on each side of the head, giving an electric shock when touched so as to produce torpor or numbness, the cramp-fish: a submarine weapon of offence, carrying a charge of gun-cotton or other explosive, and possessing powers of locomotion—in distinction to a submarine mine, which is stationary and used for defensive purposes
    • v.t Torpedo to attack with torpedoes, to explode a torpedo in or under
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. torpedo, -inis, from torpere, to be stiff, numb, or torpid. See Torpid


In literature:

Moreover, torpedoes had then begun to play a part in the war, though still in a very primitive stage of development.
"From Sail to Steam, Recollections of Naval Life" by Captain A. T. Mahan
Several I have spoken to distinctly saw the wake of the torpedo for many hundred yards.
"The Incomparable 29th and the "River Clyde"" by George Davidson
At 3:15 a.m., October 28th, exploded torpedo under the ram Albemarle and sunk her.
"Reminiscences of Two Years in the United States Navy" by John M. Batten
Possibly they think we're too small for them to waste a torpedo on.
"Boy Scouts in the North Sea" by G. Harvey Ralphson
Thinking that all his torpedoes had gone, the Commanding Officer proceeded to retire at slow speed.
"World's War Events, Vol. II" by Various
The report that the Nebraskan had been torpedoed caused surprise to American officials here.
"New York Times Current History; The European War, Vol 2, No. 4, July, 1915" by Various
Their steamship had been torpedoed, and their last message by wireless had been caught by the British.
"Some Naval Yarns" by Mordaunt Hall
We got off about twenty Mark VII torpedoes before Chase passed the word to change over.
"A Question of Courage" by Jesse Franklin Bone
Now, are you a good shot with the torpedo?
"Under the Ensign of the Rising Sun" by Harry Collingwood
Some one was coming, probably other torpedo detectives, and we ran away.
"Ralph Gurney's Oil Speculation" by James Otis

In poetry:

Firecrackers and torpedoes,
Trumpet and flag and drum,
Rockets and pinwheels and paper caps,
For Fourth of July had come.
"Young America" by Carolyn Wells
Now with a humming from the greening skies,
Sphinx moths with course set true,
Shoot forth, torpedoes with a spinning screw,
And bulbous lantern eyes;
"Moths" by Dorothy Violet Wellesley
Ah no!
Fly Fly that fatal foe,
Virtue shall shrink from his torpedo grasp—
For not more fatal thro' the Wretches veins
Benumb'd in Death's cold pains
Creeps the chill poison of the deadly asp.
"Birth-Day Ode 02" by Robert Southey
When t' north wind is howlin', an' t' west wind is yowlin',
It's for t' farm lads at sea that us lasses mun pray;
Tassey-Will o' t' new biggin, keepin' watch i' his riggin ,
Lile Jock i' his fo'c'sle, torpedoed i' t' bay.
"The Flowers of Knaresborough Forest" by F W Moorman
Small Craft — Small Craft — from Scapa Flow to Dover:
Small Craft — Small Craft — all the wide world over:
At risk of war and shipwreck, torpedo, mine and shell,
All honour be to Small Craft, for oh! They've earned it well!
"Small Craft" by Cicely Fox Smith
Now the Southern captain, stirred
By the spirit of his race,
Stops the firing with a word,
Bids them yield, and offers grace.
Cushing, laughing, answers, “No! we are here to fight!” and so
Swings the dread torpedo spar to its place.
"Albemarle Cushing" by James Jeffrey Roche

In news:

Here's Hoping The Postponement Of "Megan Wants A Millionaire" Doesn't Torpedo Fefe Dobson's Comeback.
Newt Gingrich's victory in the South Carolina primary Saturday showed some strengths that his critics hadn't fully appreciated but also revealed weaknesses that could torpedo his presidential campaign over the long run.
Randy Quaid wants to open for Charlie Sheen's 'My Violent Torpedo of Truth' tour.
This week, some TORPEDOS (a high school leadership group from Florence) went into Florence Elementary School to talk to kids about a new danger.
The Abanaki heavy oil groundwater remediation system does not use a groundwater or torpedo pump.
Don't get fooled by the front panel: The Torpedo VB-101 is an easy-to-program device for recording your amp without using a speaker cabinet.
Lil' Savage are precision-machined, solid billet aluminum torpedo levels.
TORPEDO LEVELS John Pickrell Boise, Idaho.
1928 Mercedes-Benz 680S Saoutchik Torpedo .
Haivision Network Video introduced the Torpedo family of DVB-to-IP gateways, which can take digital broadcasts and deliver them over IP video networks without re-encoding the content.
Fears & Phobias at Torpedo Factory.
Torpedo Factory Art Center's Target Gallery presents Fears & Phobias from January 12 through February 19, 2012.
1951 Alfa Romeo Matta Torpedo .
Quiznos aims ' Torpedo ' ads at Subway market.
My Violent Torpedo of Truth (Review).