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poleax

[pohl-aks] /ˈpoʊlˌæks/
noun, plural poleaxes
[pohl-ak-siz] /ˈpoʊlˌæk sɪz/ (Show IPA)
1.
a medieval shafted weapon with blade combining ax, hammer, and apical spike, used for fighting on foot.
2.
an ax, usually with a hammer opposite the cutting edge, used in stunning and slaughtering animals.
3.
an ax with both a blade and a hook, formerly used in naval warfare to assist sailors in boarding vessels.
verb (used with object), poleaxed, poleaxing.
4.
to strike down or kill with or as if with a poleax.
Origin
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English pollax battle-ax, literally, head-ax (see poll1, ax); akin to Middle Low German polexe

poleaxe

[pohl-aks] /ˈpoʊlˌæks/
noun, plural poleaxes
[pohl-ak-siz] /ˈpoʊlˌæk sɪz/ (Show IPA),
verb (used with object), poleaxed, poleaxing.
1.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for poleaxes

poleaxe

/ˈpəʊlˌæks/
noun
1.
another term for battle-axe (sense 1)
2.
a former naval weapon with an axe blade on one side of the handle and a spike on the other
3.
an axe used by butchers to slaughter animals
verb
4.
(transitive) to hit or fell with or as if with a poleaxe
Word Origin
C14 pollax battle-axe, from poll + axe
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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Word Origin and History for poleaxes

poleax

n.

kind of axe used as a weapon or by butchers, c.1300, pollax, from pol "head" (see poll (n.)) + ax (n.). From notion of beheading or head-splitting, or perhaps from the shape of the ax. Spelling altered 17c. by confusion with pole (n.1)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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