Definition of sidearm in US English:



  • A weapon worn at a person's side, such as a pistol or other small firearm (or, formerly, a sword or bayonet).

    • ‘Police recovered five rifles, 18 sidearms, 84 bullets, and 700 assegais in follow-up house-to-house searches.’
    • ‘Fry - 739 had a hand around the throat ribbing of her armor and his sidearm against the side of her helmet.’
    • ‘This system is usually found in small personal defense pistols, or in full-sized law enforcement sidearms In the latter case, it is a deterrent against liability lawsuits.’
    • ‘In every U.S. military action from World War I to Vietnam, the 1911 served as the standard sidearm for the American armed services.’
    • ‘Stone watched the scene play out in slow motion as the man grabbed one of the officer's sidearms and bring it to bear where they were standing.’
    • ‘And having a personal sidearm wouldn't help you under many civil war scenarios.’
    • ‘Although sidearms are usually primary defensive weapons for officers on patrol, they are secondary on tactical SWAT call-outs where shoulder-fired arms generally take over.’
    • ‘The P - 35 was the standard sidearm of both sides in the Falklands intervention, and many were used by both Israeli and Arab forces in the Middle East.’
    • ‘A police presence has been established to stabilise the area after 171 men were arrested and rifles, sidearms, ammunition, assegais and pangas seized.’
    • ‘With regards to the number of weapons that a player can carry at any one time, one automatic rifle and one sidearm may be carried, along with a lethal knife for silent close quarters takedowns.’
    • ‘In the course of this encounter, a courageous career prison officer and part-time cop named Claude Deckard braved the rifle fire with his personal sidearm at the distance of a football field.’
    • ‘The exact total, however, is unknown, as most citations only refer to ‘pistol’ or ‘revolver’ and some famous events do not mention sidearms at all.’
    • ‘We who carry sidearms are also in need of knowing the basic in and outs of knife offense/defense.’
    • ‘They are armed with 9mm sidearms as standard, but can upgrade these to 12.5mm sidearms if they wish.’
    • ‘By carrying sidearms, contractor employees run the risk of being seen as unlawful combatants.’
    • ‘While many photos of Patton show him carrying one or two ivory-handled sidearms, Eisenhower is never depicted as visibly armed.’
    • ‘After-market grips on self-defense handguns (and sporting sidearms as well) create a better fit between customer and product.’
    • ‘All of the above C [O.sub.2] powered repeaters are useful in training for the street by duplicating the heft and overall feel of popular sidearms used in law enforcement and for personal defense.’
    • ‘I had always been a fan of the M1911 pistol, but after Cooper's training, the 1911.45 was the only sidearm that mattered to me.’
    • ‘Energy rifles and sidearms were stacked along one wall, small explosives charges and other weapons stored around the room.’


  • 1(of a throw, pitch, or cast) performed or delivered with a sweeping motion of the arm at or below shoulder level.

    • ‘Osoria relies on a hard sinking fastball thrown with a sidearm delivery.’
    • ‘When he is ahead in the count, he likes to drop down to a sidearm delivery and throw a two-seam fastball or hard slider.’
    • ‘Any slide with the heel decidedly outside of the toe will open the shoulders and body away from the target and create a sidearm delivery.’
    • ‘He used a sidearm delivery, and actually turned his back completely on the batter before spinning forward in his motion.’
    • ‘He also drops down to throw his sinker and slider from a sidearm delivery.’
    • ‘Shouse, 33, is a longtime minor leaguer who developed a sidearm delivery to use against left-handed hitters last year.’
    • ‘It isn't common knowledge today, but Walter Johnson threw his blazing fastball with a sidearm delivery.’
    • ‘He throws from a strange arm slot, almost sidearm, and if he loses that slot, wildness can result.’
    • ‘His sidearm delivery is tough on right-handed hitters because the fastball moves down and in on them.’
    • ‘He never has been accurate when he drops into a sidearm delivery, and he is struggling too much for a third-year pro.’
    • ‘As a middle and long reliever, Pina continued to fool hitters with his sidearm delivery and deceptive palmball.’
    • ‘Johnson had a blazing fastball that flowed effortlessly from his exaggerated sidearm delivery.’
    • ‘When general manager Ken Williams watched the tape, he liked what he saw - sinking and moving pitches, a sidearm delivery and an ability as a right-hander to get out left-handed hitters.’
    • ‘This year, Rusch sports a tighter, bigger-breaking curve, and he has been using a sidearm delivery occasionally on breaking pitches to left-handed batters.’
    • ‘He made casual sidearm throws to first and took wild swings at pitches in the dirt.’
    • ‘Borland has a sidearm delivery that can be deceptive.’
    • ‘The sidearm delivery especially was effective.’
    • ‘Though he has been criticized for his unorthodox sidearm delivery, he is the second-leading passer in the history of the league.’
    • ‘He has the funky sidearm delivery to make it happen.’
    • ‘After more than a decade in the minors, Taylor changed his delivery to a sidearm motion, which improved his control.’
    1. 1.1 (of a person, typically a baseball pitcher) using a sweeping motion of the arm at or below shoulder level.


  • In a sidearm manner.

    ‘I could throw sidearm’


[with object]Baseball
  • 1Throw or pitch a ball to (someone) with a sidearm motion.

    • ‘‘You sidearm it in one forward throw, no back motion, after sneaking up on the animal,’ says Gullung, a New Orleans native.’
    • ‘Smith tended to sidearm his throws, but Tedford got him to keep the ball up around his ear and deliver passes over the top.’
    1. 1.1 Throw or pitch (a ball or other object) with a sidearm motion.