Lewis gun

/ˈluəs gʌn/ (say 'loohuhs gun)

noun
a light air-cooled machine gun.
{named after Isaac Lewis, 1858–1931, US army officer who designed it in 1911}
The Lewis gun was widely used in World War I by Australian and other Allied troops. It could fire around 500 bullets a minute, equivalent to the fire-power of 50 rifles, and was used to provide covering fire for troops assaulting enemy positions. The gun weighed about 12 kg, about half the weight of other machine guns of the time, and could, but with some difficulty, be carried and fired by a single soldier, allowing the possibility of offensive as well as defensive use. Its cooling mechanism meant that it could be fired in sustained bursts without overheating and jamming, a problem with earlier machine guns. Lewis guns were also used in tanks and mounted on aircraft.

Australian English dictionary. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Lewis gun — a light, air cooled, gas operated machine gun with a circular magazine, first used in World War I. Also called Lewis automatic, Lewis machine gun. [1910 15; named after I. N. LEWIS] * * * …   Universalium

  • Lewis gun — noun a light air cooled machine gun with a magazine operated by gas from its own firing, used mainly in the First World War. Origin early 20th cent.: named after the American colonel Isaac N. Lewis …   English new terms dictionary

  • lewis gun — n. a light machine gun with a magazine, air cooling, and operation by gas from its own firing. Etymology: I. N. Lewis, Amer. soldier d. 1931, its inventor …   Useful english dictionary

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  • Lewis, Colonel Isaac Newton — SUBJECT AREA: Weapons and armour [br] b. 12 October 1858 New Salem, Pennsylvania, USA d. 9 November 1931 Hoboken, New Jersey, USA [br] American soldier and weapons designer. [br] Lewis graduated from the US Military Academy, West Point, in 1884… …   Biographical history of technology

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