One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1British A device fixed to the exhaust of a motor vehicle to reduce engine noise.North American term muffler (sense 2)
- ‘On Tuesday, the traffic police and the Transport Department plan to conduct joint inspection of vehicles that emit excess smoke, produce more noise and have defective silencers, headlamps and tail lamps.’
- ‘In the future, as noise pollution regulations become even stricter, we may see exhaust systems that use active noise-cancelling silencers.’
- ‘One day between Collooney and Ballisodare, a driver of McGowan's lost the exhaust silencer from the engine in a flood.’
- ‘Its twin chamber exhaust system is made of stainless steel all the way to the silencers, before exhaust emissions leave the car through the four tailpipes.’
- ‘Besides all the traditional ways to cut noise including hard and soft foam, dash panel silencers and rear wheel-house sandwich panel, Toyota developed two new ways to help reduce noise inside the car.’
2A device used to reduce the sound of a gun as it is fired.
- ‘I hold the long metal cylinder in my left hand, my right clenched around the grip of the pistol and twist the silencer into place.’
- ‘He opened fire, the silencers muffling the gunfire to a small puff noise.’
- ‘They were also charged with conspiracy to possess firearms with intent to endanger life, and possession of handguns, silencers and a machine gun.’
- ‘The gun probably had a silencer, as only blunt noises were heard.’
- ‘In a routine check the customs officers found in his bag a Kalashnikov machine gun, two pistols with silencers, ammunition and a large number of special pens, which fire bullets.’
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