jav·​e·​lin | \ ˈjav-lən, ˈja-və- How to pronounce javelin (audio) \

Definition of javelin

1 : a light spear thrown as a weapon of war or in hunting
2a : a slender usually metal shaft at least 260 centimeters long that is thrown for distance in an athletic field event
b or javelin throw : an athletic field event in which a javelin is thrown for distance won the gold medal in the javelin … Serene Ross, who set her second American record in three weeks in the javelin throw in winning at 197 feet.— Frank Litsky

Synonyms for javelin


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of javelin in a Sentence

from atop his horse the warrior hurled a javelin that pierced the chest of his hapless foe
Recent Examples on the Web With individual event victories in the pole vault and javelin, France’s Kevin Mayer won his second World Athletics Championships decathlon gold medal Sunday at Hayward Field in Eugene. oregonlive, 24 July 2022 There's 250 chips in a javelin launching system, and that's not as sophisticated as some of the new equipment. CBS News, 24 July 2022 Winger, a Purdue graduate and four-time Olympian, had the fourth-best distance in qualifying for the women’s javelin Wednesday in the World Championships at Eugene, Ore. David Woods, The Indianapolis Star, 21 July 2022 Additionally, Dean’s children (and Ryan’s cousins), Sam and Haley, were both NCAA javelin stars. Lindsay Schnell, USA TODAY, 18 July 2022 Gaston’s Kodie Bogle won the javelin event with a 165-10 throw. Al.com Reports, al, 7 May 2022 From the sprints to the marathon, from the javelin to the shot put, nearly 2,000 track and field athletes from almost 200 countries will compete. oregonlive, 12 July 2022 The javelin throw is making a comeback in high school track and field. Rachel Bachman, WSJ, 11 July 2022 Winfield’s Seth Kemble won the javelin throw competition with a 145-08 throw. Al.com Reports, al, 17 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of javelin

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for javelin

Middle English chafeveleyn, from Middle French javeline, alteration of javelot, of Celtic origin; akin to Old Irish gabul forked stick

Learn More About javelin

Time Traveler for javelin

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near javelin

javel green



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for javelin

Last Updated

5 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Javelin.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/javelin. Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for javelin


jav·​e·​lin | \ ˈjav-lən How to pronounce javelin (audio) , ˈja-və-lən \

Kids Definition of javelin

1 : a light spear
2 : a slender rod thrown for distance in a track-and-field contest ( javelin throw )

More from Merriam-Webster on javelin

Nglish: Translation of javelin for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of javelin for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about javelin


Test Your Vocabulary

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!