hand·​gun ˈhan(d)-ˌgən How to pronounce handgun (audio)
: a firearm (such as a revolver or pistol) designed to be held and fired with one hand

Examples of handgun in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As mayor, Feinstein passed a ban on handgun possession and dedicated funding to HIV/AIDS research. Conor Murray, Forbes, 30 Nov. 2023 She is also accused of using a handgun during the commission of the crime. Noah Goldberg, Los Angeles Times, 30 Nov. 2023 Christensen did, however, say that a handgun was recovered at the scene of the shooting, and revealed that there were other children present in the house. Bailey Richards, Peoplemag, 25 Nov. 2023 Also banned are the delivery, sale and purchase of high-capacity magazines of more than 10 rounds for long guns and 15 rounds for handguns. Jeremy Gorner Chicago Tribune (tns), arkansasonline.com, 25 Nov. 2023 According to the police report made public Friday by D.C. police, who are leading the investigation, authorities also recovered a gray Nissan Sentra and a Glock 23 semiautomatic handgun. Peter Hermann, Washington Post, 24 Nov. 2023 But now, as Dontae emerged from a store, someone in a car raised a handgun and used it. Nicholas Dawidoff, The New Yorker, 18 Nov. 2023 Separate Maryland laws prohibiting a handgun purchase without a seven-day wait or a background check by the Maryland State Police were not affected by the ruling. Salvador Rizzo, Washington Post, 21 Nov. 2023 The officer noted that the driver's-side door and the door to the home were both standing open, and a rifle and handgun were visible inside the vehicle. Steven Mross, arkansasonline.com, 19 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'handgun.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of handgun was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near handgun

Cite this Entry

“Handgun.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/handgun. Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


hand·​gun ˈhan(d)-ˌgən How to pronounce handgun (audio)
: a firearm designed to be held and fired with one hand
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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