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1. A platform or mound of earth within a fort from which guns are fired over the parapet.
2. An armored protective cylinder around a revolving gun turret on a warship.

[French, diminutive of barbe, beard; see barb1.]


1. (Fortifications) (formerly) an earthen platform inside a parapet, from which heavy guns could fire over the top
2. (Military) an armoured cylinder below a turret on a warship that protects the revolving structure and foundation of the turret
[C18: from French, diminutive of barbe a nun's barb1, from a fancied similarity between the earthwork around a cannon and this part of a nun's habit]



1. a platform or mound of earth in a fortification, from which guns may be fired over the parapet.
2. an armored cylinder for protecting the lower part of a turret on a warship.
[1765–75; < French, =barbe beard + -ette -ette]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.barbette - (formerly) a mound of earth inside a fort from which heavy gun can be fired over the parapet
hill, mound - structure consisting of an artificial heap or bank usually of earth or stones; "they built small mounds to hide behind"
References in classic literature ?
The Theodore Roosevelt let fly at once with the big guns in her forward barbette, but the shells burst far below the Vogel-stern, and forthwith a dozen single-man drachenflieger were swooping down to make their attack.
came the thunder of its bomb flung neatly at the forward barbette, and a thin little crackling of rifle shots in reply.
They stopped up their ears to the musket shots, closed their shutters, barricaded their doors, allowed the matter to be concluded with or without the watch, and the next day it was said in Paris, "Etienne Barbette was broken open last night.