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See also: Deringer, Derringer, and deringer
English Wikipedia has an article on:


John Wilkes Booth's derringer


Named after gunsmith Henry Deringer Junior.



derringer (plural derringers)

  1. A type of very small, concealable pistol with one or two barrels, but without any loading system or magazine.

Usage notes[edit]

The spelling and capitalisation of the word has varied since the pistols were first designed, with Deringer being the original usage. In the late 1850s, misspellings added another R to the name, Derringer, which remained capitalised. Lower case versions of both spellings were in use soon after. The fifth edition Webster's Collegiate Dictionary in 1937 lists the now common spelling of derringer with lower case D and a single R.


  • Guns of the Old West, Charles Edward Chapel, 1961. Chapter VI.