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gunmetal

[guhn-met-l] /ˈgʌnˌmɛt l/
noun
1.
any of various alloys or metallic substances with a dark gray or blackish color or finish, used for chains, belt buckles, etc.
2.
Also called gunmetal gray. a dark gray with bluish or purplish tinge.
3.
a bronze formerly much used for cannon.
4.
an alloy of 88 percent copper, 10 percent tin, and 2 percent zinc, cast or machined for use in valves, gears, and other parts.
Also, gun metal.
Origin
1535-1545
1535-45; gun1 + metal
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for gunmetal
  • More charms appeared on gunmetal silk dresses and skirts, and fringe crowned a coatdress in gold ottoman silk.
  • The mirror, a perfect hexagon of gunmetal gray, stands vertically on a low platform.
  • The gunmetal-gray launches are revving their engines impatiently, itching to begin their nightly chase after smugglers.
  • Today he's staring at the face of a thug on the screen of his gunmetal-gray laptop.
  • The blue racer may show varying shades of gunmetal gray or blue above and below with a darker head and eye area.
British Dictionary definitions for gunmetal

gunmetal

/ˈɡʌnˌmɛtəl/
noun
1.
a type of bronze containing copper (88 per cent), tin (8–10 per cent), and zinc (2–4 per cent): used for parts that are subject to wear or to corrosion, esp by sea water
2.
any of various dark grey metals used for toys, belt buckles, etc
3.
  1. a dark grey colour with a purplish or bluish tinge
  2. (as adjective): gunmetal chiffon
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Encyclopedia Article for gunmetal

variety of bronze, formerly used for ordnance. Modern admiralty gunmetal is composed of 88 percent copper, 10 percent tin, and 2 percent zinc and is used for gears and bearings that are to be subjected to heavy loads and low speeds. It withstands atmospheric, steam, and seawater corrosion and is suitable for valves, pump parts, and steam fittings.

Learn more about gunmetal with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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11
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