can·​non·​ball | \ ˈka-nən-ˌbȯl How to pronounce cannonball (audio) \

Definition of cannonball

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually round solid missile made for firing from a cannon
2 : a jump into water made with the arms holding the knees tight against the chest
3 : a hard flat tennis service
4 : an express train


cannonballed; cannonballing; cannonballs

Definition of cannonball (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to travel with great speed

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Examples of cannonball in a Sentence


a dune buggy came recklessly cannonballing down the crowded beach

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Property owner Randall Pratt says a cannonball also was found when the property was restored in 1980. USA TODAY, "Fugitive pig, proverb library, sodium warnings: News from around our 50 states," 16 Sep. 2019 Chief Andrew Gilreath with the Folly Beach Department of Public Safety told CNN that explosives experts were able to remove both cannonballs from the beach, adding that they will likely be destroyed. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "Hurricane Dorian Unearths 2 Civil War Cannonballs on South Carolina Beach," 10 Sep. 2019 The passenger on the Silver Line Metro train first noticed the leather instrument case with a cannonball logo. Peter Hermann, Washington Post, "Music store employees help retrieve Cannonball saxophone taken twice in store burglaries," 12 June 2019 Did Mayor Maverick ever say anything about a cannonball found in La Villita? Paula Allen,, "Mystery of cannonball found at San Antonio’s La Villita in 1939 remains unsolved," 3 Aug. 2019 In the show’s title piece, a hand stands upright beside a sphere that might be a ruptured eyeball or a rusted cannonball. Washington Post, "In the galleries: Matt Wilt wields a deft hand for his ceramic creations," 3 Aug. 2019 However, a 6-pound French cannonball was found in the orchard, as were British and French musket balls. Fox News, "Grisly amputated limbs, French howitzer shell, discovered at Battle of Waterloo site," 19 July 2019 The discovery of a six pound French cannonball in the area also suggests that Napoleon was able to bring the French artillery close enough to the front lines late in the day of battle to punish the Allied forces. Allen Kim, CNN, "Human remains and musket balls found at battle site marking Napoleon Bonaparte's final defeat," 18 July 2019 Gudin led one of the divisions in the assault and was hit by a cannonball, which smashed his legs. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Remains of Napoleonic General Believed to Have Been Found in Russian Park," 12 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Over the weekend, David, Victoria, and their kids joined Elton John and David Furnish on a yacht trip in the South of France for an Instagram-worthy day of bonding, sunbathing, and cannonballing into the sea. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Victoria and David Beckham Live Their Best Lives on a Yacht with Elton John and David Furnish," 26 Aug. 2019 In February 2017, Ford cannonballed into the market, investing $1 billion self-driving startup Argo. Alex Davies, WIRED, "Softbank Pours $2.25 Billion Into GM's Bid for Self-Driving Dominance," 31 May 2018 In what can be considered typical Harbaugh fashion at this point, the Wolverines coach went ahead and cannonballed into the poll wearing his trademark khakis and polo. Chris Kwiecinski, ajc, "Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh spends his bye week Saturday practicing his cannonball," 30 Sep. 2017 Amazon effectively cannonballed into the placid waters of the grocery industry by grabbing headlines with price cuts. Greg Trotter,, "5 lessons learned from Amazon's first week with Whole Foods," 31 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cannonball.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cannonball


1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1899, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for cannonball

Last Updated

3 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cannonball

The first known use of cannonball was in 1606

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More Definitions for cannonball



English Language Learners Definition of cannonball

: a heavy metal or stone ball that is shot from a cannon


can·​non·​ball | \ ˈka-nən-ˌbȯl How to pronounce cannonball (audio) \

Kids Definition of cannonball

1 : a usually round solid missile (as of stone or metal) for firing from a cannon
2 : a jump into water made with the arms holding the knees tight against the chest

More from Merriam-Webster on cannonball

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cannonball

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cannonball

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