One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A group of soldiers detailed to fire the salute at a military funeral.
- ‘As the priest sprinkled holy water on to the coffin, a 12-strong firing party of soldiers from the Royal Artillery assembled quietly on a grassy hillock some 20 yards away.’
- ‘Many hundreds of mourners from all three services helped provide a fitting tribute, which included full Naval honours, including a gun carriage and firing party.’
- ‘When the religious ceremony was over a firing party of seven fired three volleys of shots into the air.’
- ‘This was followed by a funeral firing party gun salute and a Naval gun carriage funeral procession.’
- ‘The last post was sounded and a firing party fire three rounds as mourners gathered at his graveside.’
2another term for firing squad
- ‘The firing party after shooting Dan dead walked casually in a southerly direction leaving the parish to mourn.’
- ‘The firing party was marched up to within six paces of the prisoner, who stood between the clergymen.’
- ‘The people of Shepton Mallet claimed that they heard the sound of firing parties at dawn, but, Thomas says, all but one of the offenders were hanged, and not at dawn but at the more relaxed hour of 1 p.m.’
- ‘His last words were ‘For God's sake shoot straight ’, as none of the men in the firing party wanted to fire the shot that killed him.’
- ‘The firing party clubbed him with the butt ends of their muskets and left him for dead, his cheek bones and nose broken and one of his eyes smashed out.’
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