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pounce 1

intr.v. pounced, pounc·ing, pounc·es
1. To spring or swoop with intent to seize someone or something: a cat that pounced on a mouse; watched the falcon pounce on the baby rabbit.
2. To attack or criticize suddenly: troops that pounced on a convoy; a reporter who pounced on a politician's change of position.
3. To turn the attention to and try to take advantage of: pounce on an opportunity; pounced on his mistake.
The act or an instance of pouncing.

[From Middle English, pointed tool, talon of a hawk, shortening of ponson, pointed tool, variant of punchon, pointed tool; see puncheon1.]

pounc′er n.

pounce 2

1. A fine powder formerly used to smooth and finish writing paper and soak up ink.
2. A fine powder, such as pulverized charcoal, dusted over a stencil to transfer a design to an underlying surface.
tr.v. pounced, pounc·ing, pounc·es
1. To sprinkle, smooth, or treat with pounce.
2. To transfer (a stenciled design) with pounce.

[French ponce, from Old French, from Vulgar Latin *pōmex, *pōmic-, from Latin pūmex, pumice.]

pounc′er n.

pounce 3

tr.v. pounced, pounc·ing, pounc·es
To ornament (metal, for example) by perforating from the back with a pointed implement.

[Middle English pouncen, probably from Old French poinssonner, from poinson, pointed tool; see puncheon1.]
References in classic literature ?
They had never, I think, wanted to do so many things for their poor protectress; I mean--though they got their lessons better and better, which was naturally what would please her most-- in the way of diverting, entertaining, surprising her; reading her passages, telling her stories, acting her charades, pouncing out at her, in disguises, as animals and historical characters, and above all astonishing her by the "pieces" they had secretly got by heart and could interminably recite.
I found myself in the condition of a schoolmaster, a trap, a pitfall; of always playing spider to Dora's fly, and always pouncing out of my hole to her infinite disturbance.
When I became aware that the roc had settled and that I was once again upon solid ground, I hastily unbound my turban from its foot and freed myself, and that not a moment too soon; for the bird, pouncing upon a huge snake, killed it with a few blows from its powerful beak, and seizing it up rose into the air once more and soon disappeared from my view.
Thus did he pray, and Pallas Minerva heard his prayer; she made his hands and his feet feel light, and when the runners were at the point of pouncing upon the prize, Ajax, through Minerva's spite slipped upon some offal that was lying there from the cattle which Achilles had slaughtered in honour of Patroclus, and his mouth and nostrils were all filled with cow dung.
Her systematic manner of flying at her and pouncing on her, with or without pretence, whether or no, is wonderful, evincing an accomplishment in the art of girl-driving seldom reached by the oldest practitioners.
No, not long, but he's so extremely impertinent: and he's always hanging about, pretending his business or his clerical duties require his attendance in these parts, and really watching for poor me, and pouncing upon me wherever he sees me.
As he traveled he hunted as he had hunted with his ape people in the past, as Kala had taught him to hunt, turning over rotted logs to find some toothsome vermin, running high into the trees to rob a bird's nest, or pouncing upon a tiny rodent with the quickness of a cat.
He sprang at the nearest, pouncing to crush it to the floor under his paws.
And pouncing upon Polly, Maud dragged her away like a captured ship towed by a noisy little steam-tug.