What does recoil mean?

Definitions for recoil
rɪˈkɔɪl; ˈriˌkɔɪl, rɪˈkɔɪlre·coil

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word recoil.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. recoil, kick(noun)

    the backward jerk of a gun when it is fired

  2. recoil, repercussion, rebound, backlash(verb)

    a movement back from an impact

  3. flinch, squinch, funk, cringe, shrink, wince, recoil, quail(verb)

    draw back, as with fear or pain

    "she flinched when they showed the slaughtering of the calf"

  4. backfire, backlash, recoil(verb)

    come back to the originator of an action with an undesired effect

    "Your comments may backfire and cause you a lot of trouble"

  5. bounce, resile, take a hop, spring, bound, rebound, recoil, reverberate, ricochet(verb)

    spring back; spring away from an impact

    "The rubber ball bounced"; "These particles do not resile but they unite after they collide"

  6. kick back, recoil, kick(verb)

    spring back, as from a forceful thrust

    "The gun kicked back into my shoulder"


  1. recoil(Noun)

    The amount of energy transmitted back to the shooter from a firearm which has fired. Recoil is a function of the weight of the weapon, the weight of the projectile, and the speed at which it leaves the muzzle.

  2. recoil(Verb)

    To pull back, especially in disgust, horror or astonishment.

    He recoiled in disgust when he saw the mess.

  3. recoil(Verb)

    To retire, withdraw.

  4. Origin: From reculer.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Recoil(verb)

    to start, roll, bound, spring, or fall back; to take a reverse motion; to be driven or forced backward; to return

  2. Recoil(verb)

    to draw back, as from anything repugnant, distressing, alarming, or the like; to shrink

  3. Recoil(verb)

    to turn or go back; to withdraw one's self; to retire

  4. Recoil(verb)

    to draw or go back

  5. Recoil(noun)

    a starting or falling back; a rebound; a shrinking; as, the recoil of nature, or of the blood

  6. Recoil(noun)

    the state or condition of having recoiled

  7. Recoil(noun)

    specifically, the reaction or rebounding of a firearm when discharged

  8. Origin: [OE. recoilen, F. reculer, fr. L. pref. re- re- + culus the fundament. The English word was perhaps influenced in form by accoil.]


  1. Recoil

    Recoil is the backward momentum of a gun when it is discharged. In technical terms, the recoil caused by the gun exactly balances the forward momentum of the projectile and exhaust gasses, according to Newton's third law. In most small arms, the momentum is transferred to the ground through the body of the shooter; while in heavier guns such as mounted machine guns or cannons, the momentum is transferred to the ground through its mount. In order to bring the gun to a halt, a forward counter-recoil force must be applied to the gun over a period of time. Generally, the counter-recoil force is smaller than the recoil force, and is applied over a time period that is longer than the time that the recoil force is being applied. This imbalance of forces causes the gun to move backward until it is motionless. A change in momentum results in a force, which according to Newton's second law is equal to the time derivative of the momentum of the gun. The momentum is equal to the mass of the gun multiplied by its velocity. This backward momentum is equal in magnitude, by the law of conservation of momentum, to the forward momentum of the ejecta from the gun. If the mass and velocity of the ejecta are known, it is possible to calculate a gun’s momentum and thus the energy. In practice, it is often simpler to derive the gun’s energy directly with a reading from a ballistic pendulum or ballistic chronograph.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Recoil

    rē-koil′, v.t. to start back: to rebound: to return: to shrink from.—n. a starting or springing back: rebound: an escapement in which after each beat the escape-wheel recoils slightly.—n. Recoil′er, one who recoils.—adj. Recoil′ing.—adv. Recoil′ingly.—n. Recoil′ment. [Fr. reculer—L. re-, back, Fr. cul, the hinder part—L. culus.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. recoil

    The running in of a gun when discharged, which backward motion is caused by the force of the fire.

Military Dictionary and Gazetteer

  1. recoil

    In gunnery, is the retrograde motion impressed upon cannon by the discharge. The gas produced by the ignition of the charge in the bore, expanding with equal force in every direction, finds only two ways of escape (the muzzle and the vent); the pressure upon these points will therefore cease while it will be proportionally increased upon the parts directly opposite, that is, the bottom of the bore and that portion directly opposite the vent, producing in the first case the recoil, and in the other, indirectly, the dipping of the muzzle. The distance of the recoil depends entirely upon the nature and inclination of the ground upon which the carriage stands, the situation of the trunnions, angle of elevation, comparative weight of the gun and carriage, and upon the strength of the charge. The recoil has no appreciable effect upon the flight of a projectile, the latter being expelled from the gun before it has recoiled a fraction of an inch.

Suggested Resources

  1. recoil

    Song lyrics by recoil -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by recoil on the Lyrics.com website.

How to pronounce recoil?

  1. Alex
    US English

How to say recoil in sign language?

  1. recoil


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of recoil in Chaldean Numerology is: 3

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of recoil in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of recoil in a Sentence

  1. Arthur Conan Doyle:

    Violence does, in truth, recoil upon the violent, and the schemer falls into the pit which he digs for another.

  2. Mark Dubowitz:

    If past is prologue, the regime will always move aggressively forward when it senses American weakness and recoil when it sensed American strength.

  3. Dan Shalloway:

    The Diva Package is great for women who have little experience holding a gun, it includes guns with very little recoil like Heckler and Koch MP5. My wife really loves it.

  4. Pam Richardson:

    I mean it literally just shot and you could hear it just like a gunshot, it had recoil and everything and it just shot me straight up in the face, this part hit here and all my teeth in the front were broken.

  5. Nick Lowe:

    It's a bit like seeing a silly film of yourself a bit drunk at a party and being forced to watch it. You recoil somewhat, it's not a place I like to go back to, reliving the old days, (though) I have a degree of affection for the little twit.

Images & Illustrations of recoil

  1. recoilrecoilrecoilrecoilrecoil

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Translations for recoil

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • rekylDanish
  • Rückstoß, zurückschreckenGerman
  • echarse atrás, retrocesoSpanish
  • پس زدنPersian
  • rekyyli, hätkähtääFinnish
  • bakslátturFaroese
  • recul, reculerFrench
  • rinculoItalian
  • 跳ね返る, 後座, 反動Japanese
  • etiMāori
  • terugslag, terugtrekken, terugdeinzen, terugschrikkenDutch
  • tilbakeslag, tilbakestøt, sprette tilbake, springe tilbake, trekke seg tilbake, rekylere, gyse tilbake, spenne tilbake, tilbakevirkning, rekylNorwegian
  • recuo, coicePortuguese
  • отдача, отпрядывать, отпрянуть, отшатываться, отшатнутьсяRussian
  • rekylSwedish
  • geri tepmeTurkish
  • 畏缩Chinese

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"recoil." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 17 Sep. 2019. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/recoil>.

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