One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A large balloon anchored to the ground by cables and typically with netting suspended from it, serving as an obstacle to low-flying enemy aircraft.
- ‘There were massive air-raid precautions, trenches in public parks, barrage balloons aloft, and anti-aircraft weaponry deployed on public buildings.’
- ‘But when they approached the French shores, they first released a barrage balloon to discourage German dive-bombers, before rocket-carrying boats released scores of missiles.’
- ‘There were barrage balloons, looking like comic toy elephants, bouncing in the high wind above the massed ships, and you could hear invisible planes flying behind the grey ceiling of cloud.’
- ‘The Government had stockpiled coffins, erected masses of barrage balloons and planned, at least in outline, for the mass evacuation of British cities before 1939.’
- ‘When the fighter plane suddenly opened fire on the barrage balloons protecting the aircraft works, no one could react.’
- ‘As men and machinery poured inland, barrage balloons were raised to ward off enemy aircraft - only to be hurriedly hauled down when it was realised German artillery was using them to target the shoreline and rain down a deadly hail of shells.’
- ‘I dreamed of someday flying in a Spad, firing tracers from my machine guns at German barrage balloons or zeppelins.’
- ‘She had a chequered maritime career, which has seen her used for everything from fishing and cargo transfer to being a mooring platform for anti-aircraft barrage balloons during the second world war.’
- ‘Mr Rex Hoyes was also the owner of Marwell Hall, a country house situated in several acres of land four miles north east of the barrage balloons of Eastleigh Airport.’
- ‘The camera pans up so we can see the barrage balloons overhead.’
- ‘WW II saw the development of so-called barrage balloons, which were moored over vulnerable targets, to deny enemy aircraft the ability to make low-level attacks.’
- ‘He saw the soldiers and the land-girls, the silver sausage shapes of the barrage balloons in the sky, the occasional flight of marauder or defender aeroplanes droning aloft.’
- ‘Particularly notable is a lengthy dream sequence, in which George flies to Germany on a barrage balloon, descending upon a Nazi rally to punch Hitler.’
- ‘Applying his studies of thunderstorms, he devised a method of protecting British wartime barrage balloons from lightning, and in 1956 he published a theory of thunderstorm electricity.’
- ‘But there were no barrage balloons or anti-aircraft guns to defend York.’
- ‘The attacks suddenly seem as distant - and as lazy a reminder of the terror - as the barrage balloons put out to float above London's skyline.’
- ‘Hundreds more barrage balloons had been put up but many V1's still got through - though more and more were being destroyed before they reached London.’
- ‘It is also thought that she mistook barrage balloons for ones marking the City of London and decided to bail out thinking she would come down on dry land.’
- ‘The exhibition, which also features a full-scale replica of a 1940s barrage balloon and a re-enactment of the wartime blackout, runs until January 8, 2006, and admission is free.’
- ‘She said she made a blouse and a skating skirt for her daughter using material from a barrage balloon, which was shot down at her husband's airbase.’
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