hand·​gun | \ ˈhan(d)-ˌgən How to pronounce handgun (audio) \

Definition of handgun

: 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 Among the news bills adopted by the Virginia Legislature was the reinstatement of a former law, which restricts Virginians to one handgun purchase a month and the mandating of background checks for every firearm purchased in the state. Spencer Neale, Washington Examiner, "Trump quips to Virginia farmer: 'You'll have nobody guarding your potatoes' because of gun control measures," 19 May 2020 An employee confronted the would-be robbers, who shot at the man with a handgun, said Thomas Gilliland, a Harris County Sheriff's Office spokesman. Julian Gill, Houston Chronicle, "SWAT officers called to Woodlands-area home of suspect in Pizza Hut robbery after shots fired," 19 May 2020 Police believe after Desjardin entered the home, her boyfriend, Wargo, came in with a handgun and announced a robbery. Darcie Moran, Detroit Free Press, "Warren man shot after sex meeting turns out to be robbery, police say," 29 Apr. 2020 One year later, a gunman killed two people and injured 13 others on a busy street in Toronto after appearing to open fire at random with a handgun. Brianna Provenzano, refinery29.com, "At Least 19 People Were Killed In Shooting Rampage Across Nova Scotia," 21 Apr. 2020 There is funding for 10 new positions in the State Police, most of them tied to new gun- control laws such as universal background checks, extreme-risk protective orders and limiting handgun purchases to one per month. Laura Vozzella, Washington Post, "Virginia Democrats finish historic session under cloud of the coronavirus and economic uncertainty," 12 Mar. 2020 Court documents said another witness saw a man with a handgun near the apartment entrance shortly before the shooting took place. Justin L. Mack, Indianapolis Star, "Police: Suspect texted threats to mother of his child before killing her and another man," 23 Jan. 2020 Democratic lawmakers said the rally wouldn't impact their plans to pass gun-control measures, including universal background checks and a one-handgun-purchase-a-month limit. Bloomberg.com, "Thousands Take to the Streets in Virginia for Gun Rights Rally," 20 Jan. 2020 The Senate on Thursday passed legislation limiting handgun purchases to once a month, requiring universal background checks on gun purchases, and allowing localities to ban guns in public buildings, parks, and other areas. Denise Lavoie, BostonGlobe.com, "Virginia urges justices to uphold weapons ban at gun rally," 17 Jan. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for handgun

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for handgun

Last Updated

1 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Handgun.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/handgun. Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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How to pronounce handgun (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of handgun

: a small gun (such as a revolver or a pistol) designed to be held and shot with one hand

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