1 of 2


can·​non·​ball ˈka-nən-ˌbȯl How to pronounce cannonball (audio)
: a usually round solid missile made for firing from a cannon
: a jump into water made with the arms holding the knees tight against the chest
: a hard flat tennis service
: an express train


2 of 2


cannonballed; cannonballing; cannonballs

intransitive verb

: to travel with great speed

Example Sentences

Verb a dune buggy came recklessly cannonballing down the crowded beach
Recent Examples on the Web
When a kiter senses things are going wrong midair, their best bet is to pull their limbs close to their body and try to hit the water butt first, like a kid doing a cannonball off the high dive. Los Angeles Times, 7 Mar. 2023 Hypersonic missiles are not necessarily faster than traditional ballistic missiles, but while ballistic missiles follow a high, predictable trajectory like a cannonball, hypersonics are able to maneuver inside the atmosphere. David Hambling, Forbes, 9 Mar. 2023 For immersion or brief submersion (think doing a cannonball into the pool and then surfacing), this is where the process stops. Dr. Michael Daignault, USA TODAY, 14 July 2022 If O’Neal does that cannonball, the neighbors’ walls are close enough to be splashed. Dallas News, 18 July 2022 The Fan Zone also will host a variety of entertainment options ranging from canine all-star shows to a human cannonball. John Sturbin, Dallas News, 16 May 2022 That would tell them were on the sky to look for that additional evidence that the cosmic cannonball is indeed dark matter. Jake Parks, Discover Magazine, 14 June 2019 Paula was a voraciously social teenager, a cannonball of comic, kinetic energy. Reginald Dwayne Betts, New York Times, 14 Dec. 2022 The real Boris was a former lion tamer and silent-movie actor, and Hirsch plays him like a Yiddishkeit cannonball. Michael Schulman, The New Yorker, 7 Nov. 2022
Solmund Nystabakk, 40, who watched his son cannonball into the fjord by the Edvard Munch museum, said that the moment a wild animal appeared out of its natural habitat, people projected personality onto it. New York Times, 19 Aug. 2022 For anyone who’s so constrained but still longing to sip a cocktail while soaking on a pool step or to cannonball in after a long day, these little dippers can appeal. Allison Duncan, WSJ, 29 July 2022 Go swimming in Copper Canyon where folks cannonball from the rocks, or spend a quiet day exploring the details of the shoreline. Roger Naylor, The Arizona Republic, 17 July 2021 Excitement is important and the Volvo XC40 is like the guy at the party who showed up just to cannonball into the pool from the roof. Austin Irwin, Car and Driver, 9 May 2021 Over the weekend, David, Victoria, and their kids joined Elton John and David Furnish on a yacht trip in the South of France for an Instagram-worthy day of bonding, sunbathing, and cannonballing into the sea. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, 26 Aug. 2019 In February 2017, Ford cannonballed into the market, investing $1 billion self-driving startup Argo. Alex Davies, WIRED, 31 May 2018 In what can be considered typical Harbaugh fashion at this point, the Wolverines coach went ahead and cannonballed into the poll wearing his trademark khakis and polo. Chris Kwiecinski, ajc, 30 Sep. 2017 Amazon effectively cannonballed into the placid waters of the grocery industry by grabbing headlines with price cuts. Greg Trotter,, 31 Aug. 2017 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use


1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1899, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cannonball was in 1606

Dictionary Entries Near cannonball

Cite this Entry

“Cannonball.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


: a usually round solid missile for firing from a cannon
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

A Good Old-Fashioned Quiz

True or False

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

Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?