Meaning of “missile” in the English Dictionary

american-english dictionary

"missile" in British English

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missilenoun [ C ]

uk /ˈmɪs.aɪl/ us /ˈmɪs.əl/

C2 a flying weapon that has its own engine so that it can travel a long distance before exploding at the place that it has been aimed at:

a missile launcher
Missile attacks on the capital resumed at dawn.

formal any object that is thrown with the intention of causing injury or damage:

Stones, bottles, and other missiles were thrown at the police.

More examples

  • These guns will destroy or disable any incoming missile.
  • President Kennedy made his reputation with his handling of the Cuban missile crisis.
  • The missile homed in on the ship.
  • The new missile is faster and more manoeuvrable than previous models.
  • The missile strike was devastating - the target was totally obliterated.

(Definition of “missile” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"missile" in American English

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missilenoun [ C ]

us /ˈmɪs·əl/

a flying weapon that has its own engine and can travel a long distance before exploding at the place at which it has been aimed:

a nuclear missile
a guided missile

A missile can also be any object that is thrown with the intention of causing injury or damage:

Rioters hurled missiles at the police.

(Definition of “missile” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)