Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for mitraille in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)
From Old French mitaille (“small coins”), hence "scrap iron, old iron," then "grapeshot;" originally diminutive of mite (“a small coin”), from Old Dutch mite (“something small”), from Proto-Germanic *mītǭ (“biting insect"; literally, "cutter”), from Proto-Germanic *maitaną (“to cut”).
mitraille f (plural mitrailles)