Definition of broadside in English:



  • 1A fierce verbal attack.

    ‘he launched a broadside against the economic reforms’
    • ‘For the moment, the Democrats are too busy firing broadsides to pay much attention to the complexities of the issues they are distilling into sound-bites.’
    • ‘Mainly, his moral broadside is delivered against Australian refugee policy, which holds refugees in indeterminate detention, as if they had committed crimes against humanity.’
    • ‘There is, one supposes, a certain pre-emptive logic to Kerry campaign broadsides against the ‘GOP smear machine.’’
    • ‘But Berkovic refused to go without a firing a broadside at O'Neill, claiming the Hoops boss ‘did not even speak’ to the former club record signing.’
    • ‘In fact, Stern's ratings surged this year after he began leveling his broadsides against the Bush administration.’
    • ‘At this point, Rupert was going through a strongly republican phase and his newspapers contained frequent broadsides against the Royal Family, long before they became fair game for all comers.’
    • ‘Recently, President Bush's Federal Appeals Court Nominee, California's Supreme Court Justice Janice Brown, repeated the same broadside at her Senate hearing.’
    • ‘It's a lot harder to love his gratuitous broadsides against Norman Mailer for being ‘an old pile of bones.’’
    • ‘I had been told to expect such treatment, and while it certainly did not outweigh the positive responses, something about the abusive tone and inaccuracies of these broadsides was disturbing.’
    • ‘He furiously pointed at Powell and launched a broadside of obscenities at the Secretary.’
    • ‘One of the Hearst's first broadsides against Pulitzer was to pinch Richard Outcault, the Yellow Kid's creator.’
    • ‘Atkins' public broadsides against ‘regulatory overreach’ have made him a hero in business and conservative circles.’
    • ‘He has blown onto the scene in a torrent of invective, firing broadside after broadside at the crumbling bastions of public morality.’
    • ‘Vallandigham eventually made his way to Canada, where he spent the rest of the war writing broadsides against Lincoln and the Republicans.’
    • ‘Though Michael Moore has many critics, none have called him a terrorist for his broadsides against the U.S. government.’
    • ‘In an early version of what now arrives in the form of neoconservative broadsides against political correctness, he went so far as to equate the pressure of nineteenth-century progressive criticism with the censorship of the Tsars.’
    • ‘The round table also agreed that Hillary Clinton's comments this week about abuse of power and timid press coverage were simply silly little broadsides designed to get her elected in 2006 and 2008 and nothing more.’
    • ‘In an apparent bid to save the crumbling alliance, the two men met yesterday at an undisclosed venue in Cape Town after firing public broadsides at each other for over a week.’
    • ‘This time Catholic conservatives who have celebrated Donohue's tactics when employed against liberal targets took umbrage at his broadsides against Hastert.’
    • ‘The US government in its own inimitable fashion has been firing broadsides against everyone opposed to its continuation.’
    • ‘Contemporary journalists described Reagan's address as an anti-Communist broadside, almost wholly ignoring the President's positive agenda of promoting human freedom.’
    • ‘Having set up the basic characters and situation, Lear and his co-writers followed the logic of the characters how real people would react in these circumstances - rather than just delivering cheap political broadsides.’
    • ‘Breyer's style would prove far more hospitable to O'Connor than Brennan's broadsides; like her, he was attuned to the particularities of each case and searched for common ground.’
    criticism, censure, denunciation, harangue, rant, polemic, diatribe, tirade, philippic
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  • 2historical A firing of all the guns from one side of a warship.

    • ‘The Monitor proved impervious to the Virginia's broadsides and captured the imaginations of naval officials and the public.’
    • ‘Without hesitating La Buse sailed straight in, fired a broadside at the galleon, then boarded it, almost without resistance.’
    • ‘The English drove in hard and close, pouring broadsides into the Armada, though they still could not break its formation.’
    • ‘To do this they would have to come up alongside our ships leaving them exposed to a broadside from English cannons on our ships.’
    • ‘HMS Duke of York fired 80 broadsides; and the Allied ships fired a total of 2,195 shells during the engagement.’
    salvo, volley, cannonade, barrage, blast, bombardment, fusillade, hail of bullets
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    1. 2.1 The set of guns which can fire on each side of a warship.
      • ‘Now within cannon range, the Hurricane and her consorts unmasked their broadsides and hurled a firestorm of plasma cannon fire at the Asp and the remaining corvettes.’
      • ‘While the Roma may be quick, she only has two Class-Two forward mounts and two on each broadside.’
      • ‘The Virginia carried ten major guns (four in each broadside, one bow and one stern gun) and an iron ram.’
      • ‘The Confederate broadsides contained fewer guns with each shot and fewer missiles were launched from the attackers.’
      • ‘The battleships opened up their broadsides, and half the alien ships were crushed before their element command could react.’
    2. 2.2 The side of a ship above the water between the bow and quarter.
      • ‘As the missiles bore in, the Confederate vessels turned as one and presented their heavily armored broadsides to the incoming fire.’
      • ‘Because warships mounted almost all their guns on the broadside, and were vulnerable to fire from ahead or astern, actions were usually fought in line ahead.’
      • ‘A mere five gun ports open across their broadside.’
      • ‘Lining up your shot while not giving your foe a chance at your broadside is a challenge, and having the biggest ship doesn't always ensure victory.’
      • ‘Finally… he swooped down, raking the cruiser's starboard broadside with his guns, destroying three of the seven turrets placed there.’
  • 3A sheet of paper printed on one side only, forming one large page.

    ‘a broadside of Lee's farewell address’
    • ‘And at the same time Dave Haselwood printed up a broadside poem of mine that later appeared in Memoirs of an Interglacial Age, so I could go on a trip with Michael McClure to New York to do readings at colleges and stuff.’
    • ‘This odd broadside concluded by proclaiming, ‘We speak in this forum because it is the only one you have put at our disposal.’’
    • ‘Thus the broadside - generally a single sheet printed on one side - gained popularity and usefulness.’
    • ‘One of the ways in which the ballad was disseminated was through public performance in the streets by balladeers, who might also sell copies of the songs, printed on broadsides.’
    • ‘No other property gets taken away after 10 or 20 years, they wrote in a broadside, so why should books?’
    • ‘Throughout the collection is an assortment of rare books and contemporary works including novels, short stories, poetry, plays, essays, literary historical and critical texts, literary broadsides, and the like.’
    • ‘Both his mastery of the irascible and unpredictable George II and his control of a previously unmanageable Parliament were portrayed in countless broadsides and prints as the arts of a veritable political conjuror.’
    • ‘In three cases, words were added from broadsides or other printed sources.’
    • ‘The story was printed as a broadside - a single sheet of paper about 2ft x 3ft - with high-quality paper and elegant typography.’
    • ‘There was a free brochure, done in French fold, with a text pamphlet and, on the verso, a souvenir broadside printed in willow branches like those that appeared in a stretch of wallpaper marking the entrance to the show.’
    • ‘Most of these were in print and available as broadsides, but that is not the point here: they were ‘traditional’ in the sense of having been in circulation time out of mind, and had not been made up by ballad-mongers between 1800 and 1850.’
    • ‘From the floods of pamphlets and broadsides of the period, we see newspapers and popular journals, as we will know them, beginning to emerge and to differentiate functions and audiences.’
    • ‘Cheap tracts and single sheet broadsides fed an apparently insatiable popular appetite for novelty, sensation and titillation.’
    • ‘They printed a broadside in two colors on an early nineteenth-century Columbian handpress in an edition sufficient for all participants in the workshops to have one.’
    • ‘Randall's first publications in 1965 were literally broadsides - single poems printed on large sheets of paper that sold for fifty cents.’
    • ‘Nathan reports that no-one saw them after they'd dispersed into the crowd to distribute the Committee's broadside condemning Reverend Owings's capitalistic dogma.’
    • ‘Dali responded by printing a broadside, detailing his repudiation of the pavilion.’
    • ‘They printed their broadsides in a sufficient edition so that all participants in the program could have one.’
    • ‘This illustration appeared on an 1835 broadside illustrating John Greenleaf Whittier's poem, ‘My countrymen in Chains.’’
    • ‘A ready market thus opened up for political propaganda - in the form of pamphlets, newspapers, broadsides, squibs, and caricatures - and the print trade rushed to meet it.’


  • 1With the side turned in a particular direction.

    ‘the yacht was drifting broadside to the wind’
    • ‘The ram was standing broadside at about 125 yards.’
    • ‘A nice buck stepped out of the bush maybe 100 yards to my left and posed broadside, just like a picture in a magazine.’
    • ‘In my experience it seldom happens this way, but suddenly there was a magnificent Kudu bull standing broadside at about 50 yards, with a clear lane through the bush to him.’
    • ‘As the waiting travellers watched in frozen horror, it slewed crazily to one side as it carried on towards them, wrecking the parapets and heading broadside for the station.’
    • ‘Animals don't come off assembly lines, nor do they obligingly stand around broadside while the hunter finds a solid rest and manipulates the power ring.’
    • ‘Because the surveyor must be able to view the length of a log through the angle gauge, it should be observed that as one views the log more end-on instead of broadside, the likelihood of sampling the log vanishes.’
    • ‘I lowered the rifle and saw that he had stopped and was standing broadside looking at us.’
    • ‘He stands broadside to the road's line of travel, his front feet at the bottom of the cutbank where the road is in a trough sliced through a low hill to ease the grade.’
    • ‘The first rank of four turreted monitors could fire head-on; then seven warships could fire broadside at the fort as they steered sharply to port into the bay.’
    • ‘Both were also lauded - Mary for her beauty and grace, the Mary Rose because as one of the first warships equipped to fire broadside, she was a marvel of her time.’
    • ‘While the two ships were lying almost broadside to each other, gun crews of both sides kept blasting away.’
    • ‘The lead doe minced into an opening and paused broadside at 140 yards.’
    • ‘Asteroid brightnesses change every few hours as they spin, first brightening when they are broadside to us and fading when end-on.’
    • ‘He was standing broadside at what I would estimate to be the second-closest shot I have ever made in the field, about 35 yards.’
    • ‘If they must, they could turn the wagons broadside to the wind and use them for cover, and their felted tents and sleeping sacks would keep them from freezing to death.’
    • ‘What makes jack crevalle difficult to land is their tendency while resting to turn broadside to the angler.’
    • ‘At around 50 yards I had placed a 325-grain.50 AE bullet into that pig standing broadside.’
    • ‘While our wingman searched another sector, we decided to search for the raft upwind, figuring a barge broadside to the wind would blow farther than a small raft with a sea anchor.’
    • ‘Of course, in theory, the game animal is standing broadside, giving the hunter plenty of time to size it properly, select the correct aiming point, and press the trigger.’
    • ‘Any ill-advised surfer who turns a 9-or 10-foot longboard broadside into the tumble of a small wave knows the incredible power of moving water.’
    1. 1.1 On the side.
      ‘her car was hit broadside by another vehicle’
      • ‘Really, it was headed west on the Route 30 Interstate and it negotiated a lane change without signaling and it struck me broadside.’
      • ‘A purplish, long, vaguely cylindrical ship shot up into the air, and rammed him full broadside.’
      • ‘One tank barely ten meters from Blaine had taken a shot full broadside.’


[with object]North American
  • Collide with the side of (a vehicle)

    ‘I had to skid my bike sideways to avoid broadsiding her’
    • ‘Khosa's truck struck two pedestrians on Marine Drive, broadsided a sport utility truck, sending it and its driver flying, and hit a parked car.’
    • ‘Caleb Kwan was in a rather serious car accident tonight when his BMW was broadsided by a large truck.’
    • ‘This one I missed seeing until it was nearly too late, and as I took evasive action I nearly broadsided another car that I was not even aware was there!’
    • ‘Anyone who was broadsided because they forgot to look left before entering an intersection will tell you how they wished they could turn back the clock.’
    • ‘Ever since I was broadsided in a hit and run incident, my door and lock just don't function as they should all the time.’
    • ‘But Marry Houston's truck hit the outside wall and caromed into Gaughan, who was broadsided by Bryan Refiner after spinning toward the infield.’
    • ‘Rhode's craft was suddenly broadsided by a direct hit as it took a defensive position in front of Porter's smoking craft.’
    • ‘The vehicle driven by Erin Brockovich, an unemployed single mother of three, is broadsided by a speeding car at an intersection.’
    • ‘We were southbound on a major interstate, completely oblivious to the fact that, within a matter of seconds, another vehicle nearly would broadside us.’
    • ‘Three years ago, in Arlington Heights, Illinois, Police Officer Chuck Tiedge's squad car was broadsided by a hearse that ran a red light.’
    • ‘But all of that changed on November 5, 1983 when a drunk driver broadsided the Fisher's car one block away from their house.’
    • ‘A woman backing out of her driveway was broadsided on the driver's side of her car by another vehicle heading south on 131st Avenue SE in east Snohomish.’


  • broadside on

    • Sideways on.

      ‘the ship swung broadside on to the current of the river’
      • ‘The lighters had not been moored and were drifting away from the beach on a fast current, coming broadside on to the shore.’
      • ‘Any cyclist crossing the roundabout from Stockton Lane to Heworth Green is in danger of being hit broadside on.’
      • ‘A Thai coastal patrol boat caught broadside on by the waves had been tumbled over and over and finished hundreds of yards inshore.’
      • ‘There was a technical issue between the experts as to whether if the vessel had been manoeuvred by tugs back to the shore, either stern on or broadside on, it would have capsized as its hull came into contact with the shelving seabed.’
      • ‘Thousands of people flocked to the beachfront to watch last night's drama as heavy seas pounded the Oranjeland lying broadside on the beachfront.’
      • ‘The ‘Symphonie’ was now broadside on the rocks with an ebbing tide.’
      • ‘Suddenly, Asedrisean heard a sword clatter to the earth and felt it land broadside on his chest.’
      • ‘She was 135 days out from Tacoma on the west coast of the United States, loaded with grain bound for Falmouth when, in a south-westerly gale, she hit the rock broadside on, her mainyard smashing into the tower.’
      • ‘When the Sun, Earth, and Mercury are aligned, the orbital motion appears fast, because the Mercury is seen broadside on, like a vehicle passing an observer at the roadside.’
      • ‘And when they were actually engaged and one ship was making for another in order to ram it, it would swerve from its course and receive a side-blow from the other's beak, whilst the one which was coming broadside on would suddenly be swung round and present its prow.’
      • ‘Weighill stayed at 1000-ft and watched five of the Naval vessels, which were about a mile from the beach and turned broadside on, proceeding to belch flame and destruction.’
      • ‘He turned the animal broadside on to act as an anchor, and started to strip off his clothes.’