star shell

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Alternative forms[edit]


star shell (plural star shells)

  1. (military) A type of ammunition shell which bursts to release a shower of stars for illuminating enemy positions etc.
    • 1928, Siegfried Sassoon, Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man, Penguin 2013, p. 260:
      Twilight deepened, and a flicker of star-shells wavered in the sky beyond Béthune.
    • 1929, Frederic Manning, The Middle Parts of Fortune, Vintage 2014, p. 5:
      The sky flickered with the flash of guns, and an occasional star-shell flooded their path with light.
    • 1990, Peter Hopkirk, The Great Game, Folio Society 2010, p. 351:
      To deprive the enemy of any advantage they might gain at night, he had star shells which could light up the entire countryside.