present arms


pre·​sent arms pri-ˈzent- How to pronounce present arms (audio)
: a position in the manual of arms in which the rifle is held vertically in front of the body
: a command to assume the position of present arms or to give a hand salute

Examples of present arms in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The guards at Schönbrunn were forbidden to present arms and were instructed to look at the ground when her carriage passed. David Netto, Town & Country, 7 Aug. 2019

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

Word History


from the command present arms!

First Known Use

circa 1884, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of present arms was circa 1884

Dictionary Entries Near present arms

Cite this Entry

“Present arms.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jun. 2024.

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