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[tur-it, tuhr-] /ˈtɜr ɪt, ˈtʌr-/
a small tower, usually one forming part of a larger structure.
a small tower at an angle of a building, as of a castle or fortress, frequently beginning some distance above the ground.
Also called turrethead
[tur-it-hed, tuhr-] /ˈtɜr ɪtˌhɛd, ˈtʌr-/ (Show IPA)
. a pivoted attachment on a lathe or the like for holding a number of tools, each of which can be presented to the work in rapid succession by a simple rotating movement.
Military. a domelike, sometimes heavily armored structure, usually revolving horizontally, within which guns are mounted, as on a fortification, ship, or aircraft.
Fortification. a tall structure, usually moved on wheels, formerly employed in breaching or scaling a fortified place, a wall, or the like.
1300-50; Middle English turet < Middle French turete, equivalent to tur tower + -ete -et
Related forms
turretless, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for turret
  • One corner of the tower is sliced away to reveal a cylindrical core of shingled zinc that evokes the image of a turret or silo.
  • The master bedroom is in the house's turret and has a working fireplace.
  • Last summer scientists and divers raised the ship's gun turret to the surface.
  • She will have no masts, no bulwarks, no structure of any kind on deck except the turret.
  • In addition, the rescue tank's turret even sprouts wings and becomes a fighter.
  • The house's round turret is part of the master bedroom.
  • One of the magic gloves flew out a turret window and landed safely on the ground.
  • Two machine guns are mounted amidship, port and starboard, and a three-inch gun juts from its turret on the forward deck.
  • It struck a marine who was peering out of the first vehicle's gun turret.
  • Here's how it works: at the bottom of the screen is a turret which rotates back and forth.
British Dictionary definitions for turret


a small tower that projects from the wall of a building, esp a medieval castle
  1. a self-contained structure, capable of rotation, in which weapons are mounted, esp in tanks and warships
  2. a similar structure on an aircraft that houses one or more guns and sometimes a gunner
a tall wooden tower on wheels used formerly by besiegers to scale the walls of a fortress
(on a machine tool) a turret-like steel structure with tools projecting radially that can be indexed round to select or to bring each tool to bear on the work
Word Origin
C14: from Old French torete, from tor tower, from Latin turris
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 turret

c.1300, "small tower," from Old French touret (12c.), diminutive of tour "tower," from Latin turris (see tower). Meaning "low, flat gun-tower on a warship" is recorded from 1862, later also of tanks. Related: Turreted.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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