Definition of cannonade in US English:



  • A period of continuous heavy gunfire.

    • ‘Riding a magnificent horse over flower-strewn, gold-embroidered carpets, greeted by cannonades and cheers, Jem happily confirms the rumour that ‘the Rhodian women were considered the loveliest in Europe‘.’
    • ‘I asked him if he sincerely thought that his daily cannonade of reports, forms, checks and feedbacks led to a better or worse health service, whether in the short term or the long.’
    • ‘None of them were present at the famous cannonade, but their main forces were certainly caught up in the rain-soaked and disease-ravaged retreat which followed.’
    • ‘What we need is a cannonade to knock out whoever might be there.’
    • ‘A desultory cannonade began at about 14.00, and as it seemed likely that there would be no battle that day Newcastle retired to his coach.’
    • ‘They were thrilled by the appearance of a l2-person heritage guard, a cannonade fired in salute and a fly past by a Navy Seahawk helicopter from HMAS ALBATROSS.’
    • ‘Brown intends to put this right in his budget speech next week, however, when he will launch a cannonade against what their cuts in services would mean.’
    • ‘Full-page ads in The New York Times and The Washington Post are now standard weapons for enviro campaigns, but no one had thought of using advertising as a cannonade before Brower.’
    • ‘This was a recipe for confusion and bloodshed; it culminated in the disastrous French cannonade on Damascus in November 1944.’
    • ‘Melba's initial trill possessed the ballistic force of a cannonade.’
    • ‘Soon after 6 pm the spasmodic barking of the night-time cannonade (now normal in spite of its intensity) gave place to a ‘kettle-drum bombardment’.’
    • ‘All killings, all maimings, all arrogant demolishions of people's homes, all assassinations, all bombings, all suicide attacks, all aerial slaugherings, all tank cannonades, all invasions are inherently wrong.’
    • ‘Yet, what impresses throughout is the highly imaginative state-of-the-art stagecraft depicting everything from cannonades against sailing ships to samurai massacres.’
    • ‘The son et lumière raged off Southsea Common, watched by hundreds of thousands of people long past dusk, before a stunning 15-minute cannonade of fireworks lit up the Solent.’
    • ‘Three times the German armor attempted to break through, but, as more battalions of American artillery joined the cannonade, the enemy at last gave way.’
    • ‘Surprisingly, after his cannonade of criticism, Kramer's book offers only small-bore recommendations, ‘modest’ by his own admission.’
    • ‘I know what it means to live in terror, to run under air strikes and cannonades, to see people killed and houses destroyed, to starve and dream of a piece of bread, to miss even a glass of drinking water.’
    • ‘In the 2000 ceremony, to make up for lost time, the Church created 860 additional saints, making this by far the biggest cannonade of saints ever set off in Russia.’
    • ‘A national salute and two cannonades, one from Brooklyn Heights the other from Jersey City, greeted the Vanderbilt.’
    • ‘An immersion theatre using the latest special effects will give visitors an idea of the bloody carnage that the relentless cannonade of grapeshot inflicted on the Jacobite lines.’
    bombardment, shelling, gunfire, artillery fire, barrage, battery, attack, pounding
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[no object]
  • Discharge heavy guns continuously.

    ‘the daily cannonading continued’
    • ‘During the fight the cannonading was so violent that the crew of the Naesborg could not stand erect on the deck.’
    • ‘He has resumed with gusto his cannonading of Congress and the establishment, doing what he does best.’
    • ‘As the straight drives cannonaded off Ranji's bat, father stopped bowling lest he get hurt!’
    • ‘Raucous, sometimes almost spiritual singing, pushes from cellars, echoing and cannonading off the narrow whitewashed alleys.’
    • ‘During the three days no help came to Bellew and shortly after Hardress cannonaded the castle and town and took it.’
    • ‘Even as the thunder rolled off the cliff faces in deafening, cannonading peals, a cuttingly cold wind turned the downpour to stinging, slanting, mist-laden torrents, making it difficult to see.’
    • ‘Gouts of superheated water geysered, consumed by the column of fire, each rocketing fountain propelled heavenward by a deafening, heart-stopping concussion that left cannonading echoes in its wake.’
    • ‘We are looking daily for a big fight to come off, even now cannonading is distinctly heard.’
    • ‘The enormous guns are now cannonading & preparing the way for our infantry.’
    • ‘The winds buffeted the houses, slates blew off roofs and cannonaded against roads or windows in their path.’
    • ‘Megalithic standing stones and a 5000 year-old passage grave, a twelfth century church ruin, a fourteenth century O'Driscoll castle, cannonaded in the early 1600s, suggest times past.’
    • ‘Her fears for her husband, who left two weeks later, were intensified when she heard cannonading from her own home.’


Mid 16th century: from French, from Italian cannonata, from cannone (see cannon).