torpedo

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tor·pe·do / tôrˈpēdō/ • n. (pl. -does) 1. a cigar-shaped self-propelled underwater missile designed to be fired from a ship or submarine or dropped into the water from an aircraft and to explode on reaching a target. ∎  a signal placed on a railroad track, exploding as the train passes over it. ∎  a firework exploding on impact with a hard surface. ∎ inf. a submarine sandwich. ∎ inf. a gangster hired to commit a murder or other violent act. ∎  an explosive device lowered into oil wells to clear obstructions. 2. (also tor·pe·do ray) an electric ray. • v. (-does, -doed) [tr.] attack or sink (a ship) with a torpedo or torpedoes. ∎ fig. destroy or ruin (a plan or project): fighting between the militias torpedoed peace talks. DERIVATIVES: tor·pe·do·like / -ˌlīk/ adj.

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torpedoforeshadow, shadow •Faldo •accelerando, bandeau, Brando, glissando, Orlando •eyeshadow •aficionado, amontillado, avocado, Bardo, Barnardo, bastinado, bravado, Colorado, desperado, Dorado, eldorado, incommunicado, Leonardo, Mikado, muscovado, Prado, renegado, Ricardo, stifado •commando •eddo, Edo, meadow •crescendo, diminuendo, innuendo, kendo •carbonado, dado, Feydeau, gambado, Oviedo, Toledo, tornado •aikido, bushido, credo, Guido, Ido, libido, lido, speedo, teredo, torpedo, tuxedo •widow • dildo • window •Dido, Fido, Hokkaidocondo, rondeau, rondo, secondo, tondo •Waldo •dodo, Komodo, Quasimodo •escudo, judo, ludo, pseudo, testudo, Trudeau •weirdo • sourdough • fricandeau •tournedos • Murdo

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torpedo Self-propelled underwater missile used by submarines, small surface warships, and aircraft to destroy enemy vessels. Modern torpedoes may be launched by rocket boosters, and often have internal electronic equipment for guiding the missile to the target. See also guided missile

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torpedo (zool.) electric ray XVI; case charged with gunpowder to explode under water, self-propelled submarine missile XIX. — L. torpēdō, f. torpēre be stiff or numb.

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torpedo, fish: see ray.