dreadnought

noun
dread·nought | \ˈdred-ˌnȯt, -ˌnät\

Definition of dreadnought 

1 : a warm garment of thick cloth also : the cloth

2 [ Dreadnought, British battleship ]

a : battleship

b : one that is among the largest or most powerful of its kind

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Did You Know?

Fear nothing - that is essentially what "dread" plus "nought" means. The name might seem a strange one for a garment, but if you consider that dreadnoughts were worn onboard ships, you can appreciate the colorful name perhaps as much as the seafaring men must have appreciated the thick protection dreadnoughts offered from the elements. The clothes and the cloth, first called "fearnought" in the late 18th century, came long before the battleship. Not until 1906 did the British Navy launch HMS Dreadnought, the first battleship to have a main armament consisting entirely of big guns all of the same caliber. All ships of this type were then called "dreadnoughts." That particular type of battleship soon became obsolete, but their legacy lives on in the extended third sense of "dreadnought."

Examples of dreadnought in a Sentence

poor gas mileage did little to stem the popularity of that dreadnought of the roadways: the SUV

Recent Examples on the Web

The actual dreadnought was an early 20th century warship with big guns and steam power meant to be the apex predator of naval warfare, a deadly match for any other warship and a deliverer of terror through coastal bombardment. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Problem with The Last Jedi's New Star Destroyer," 18 Dec. 2017 The actual dreadnought was an early 20th century warship with big guns and steam power meant to be the apex predator of naval warfare, a deadly match for any other warship and a deliverer of terror through coastal bombardment. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Problem with The Last Jedi's New Star Destroyer," 18 Dec. 2017 The ship is the last surviving dreadnought class battleship and a veteran of both world wars. Craig Hlavaty, Houston Chronicle, "Happy 'berth' day to the Battleship Texas, one of the Houston area's most beloved attractions," 17 May 2018 The actual dreadnought was an early 20th century warship with big guns and steam power meant to be the apex predator of naval warfare, a deadly match for any other warship and a deliverer of terror through coastal bombardment. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Problem with The Last Jedi's New Star Destroyer," 18 Dec. 2017 The actual dreadnought was an early 20th century warship with big guns and steam power meant to be the apex predator of naval warfare, a deadly match for any other warship and a deliverer of terror through coastal bombardment. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Problem with The Last Jedi's New Star Destroyer," 18 Dec. 2017 The actual dreadnought was an early 20th century warship with big guns and steam power meant to be the apex predator of naval warfare, a deadly match for any other warship and a deliverer of terror through coastal bombardment. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Problem with The Last Jedi's New Star Destroyer," 18 Dec. 2017 The cavernous bilge, the towering foredeck, the phalanxes of Tomahawk missiles — the 900-foot dreadnought is itself a mesmeric site, and director Andrew Davis conveys the hard-iron majesty, as well as mystery, of the battleship to the hilt. Thr Staff, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Under Siege': THR's 1992 Review," 9 Oct. 2017 Lexus claims a zero-to-60-mph time of only 4.6 seconds for the rear-drive LS500, and that’s in a dreadnought that weighs nearly 5000 pounds. John Pearley Huffman, Car and Driver, "2018 Lexus LS," 27 Sep. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dreadnought.' 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 dreadnought

1806, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near dreadnought

dreadingly

dreadless

dreadlock

dreadnought

dream

dream away

dreamboat

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Time Traveler for dreadnought

The first known use of dreadnought was in 1806

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