smoking gun


Definition of smoking gun

: something that serves as conclusive evidence or proof (as of a crime or scientific theory)

Examples of smoking gun in a Sentence

This document is the smoking gun that proves that he was lying.
Recent Examples on the Web Facebook, Twitter make editorial decisions to limit distribution of story claiming to show ‘smoking gun’ emails related to Biden and his son (1,032,917 interactions) 5. Kevin Roose, New York Times, "What Went Viral This Week," 18 Oct. 2020 The antibodies in chronic hepatitis patients were the smoking gun pointing toward this virus as the missing agent. Elizabeth Cooney, STAT, "Trio wins Nobel Prize in medicine for discovery of hepatitis C virus," 5 Oct. 2020 That sense of letdown, the lack of a true smoking gun, obscured just how much damning evidence the team did assemble about the president and his campaign team—even to themselves. Garrett M. Graff, Wired, "An Insider's Look at How the Mueller Investigation Fell Flat," 29 Sep. 2020 Well, Christine, TikTok is asking the same thing—where’s the smoking gun? Steven Levy, Wired, "How Many of Maria Ressa’s Warnings Will We Ignore?," 28 Aug. 2020 Help dad up his game in the kitchen with a smoking gun, which can add intense flavors to meat and cheese or even cold smoke on cocktails and ice cream. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "The 30 Best Gifts for Dad This Father’s Day," 10 June 2020 Modern bartenders use tools like immersion circulators and smoke guns to inject unique flavors into their recipes. Cole Wilson, Popular Mechanics, "Your Home Bar Needs a Smoke Gun, an Immersion Circulator, and...Milk?," 24 Apr. 2020 Burning grass, smoking gun The prairie sometimes burns naturally, as lightning strikes can spark wildfires. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Native Americans managed the prairie for better bison hunts," 25 July 2018 Turley blasts the media for promising for over a year bombshell, bombshell, bombshell, smoking gun. Fox News, "Hannity: President Trump is on a tear, enacting his agenda," 4 Apr. 2018

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

1974, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for smoking gun

Time Traveler

The first known use of smoking gun was in 1974

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Statistics for smoking gun

Last Updated

25 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Smoking gun.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for smoking gun

smoking gun


English Language Learners Definition of smoking gun

: a piece of evidence that clearly proves who did something or shows how something happened

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