Stupid question but I must have missed someting.

This is a discussion on Stupid question but I must have missed someting. within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I am seeing pistol used to describe auto guns and revolver describing wheel guns. When did pistol start meaning a semi-auto hand gun? I thout ...

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Thread: Stupid question but I must have missed someting.

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    Member Array Timezoneguy's Avatar
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    Stupid question but I must have missed someting.

    I am seeing pistol used to describe auto guns and revolver describing wheel guns. When did pistol start meaning a semi-auto hand gun? I thout the word pistol refered to a hand held held gun with out a stock. . Please clear this up for me. Thanks
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    Distinguished Member Array Brady's Avatar
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    Pistol - a gun held & fired by one hand, with a chamber that is permanently aligned with the rifled bore.
    In recent years, the word pistol has been used more & more to describe semiautomatic pistols in contrast to revolvers or sixguns.
    The Firearms Dictionary, R.A. Steindler, Stackpole Books, 1970
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    Senior Member Array Okemo's Avatar
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    Yeah, a true "pistol" is an auto. Handgun would cover both semi auto's and revolvers.

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    Member Array raytracer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Okemo View Post
    Yeah, a true "pistol" is an auto.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dwight
    Incorrect!


    Single shot handguns would also be considered "pistols".
    But only a beet farmer that lives with his mother would get bent out of shape if you called a revolver a pistol.

    Mixing up "magazine" and "clip" however, now that's a different story....

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    Member Array Napa Nick's Avatar
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    Your missing the 'H' in something.

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    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Well, seeing as how "ACP", as in .45acp, means "Automatic Colt Pistol", then I would say 'pistol' has been used to describe autos for more than 100 years now.
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    Distinguished Member Array kazzaerexys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tally XD View Post
    Well, seeing as how "ACP", as in .45acp, means "Automatic Colt Pistol", then I would say 'pistol' has been used to describe autos for more than 100 years now.
    I'd say that's a bit of faulty logic---the fact that it had to be called "Automatic Colt Pistol" implies that there are pistols that are non-automatic (and non-Colt, for that matter).

    Having done a bit of research on this, the origin for the word "pistol" is kind of lost in history; it is at least 500 or 600 years old, and it comes through German from either Hungarian or Italian. One popular etymology says the word for pistol comes from an Italian word for a small flute or whistle (think something like piccolo), as a description of the small tube for firing the bullet from a hand-held firearm (as opposed to the large barrel of a longarm).

    As far as I am concerned, pistol simply means a firearm that can be conveniently operated with only one hand. Since at the point that the word pistol came into usage, everything was still muzzle loaded, the part of the definition quoted above about the chamber being inline with the barrel seems to be a recent modification...
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    Senior Member Array Dadsnugun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Napa Nick View Post
    Your missing the 'H' in something.
    You're missing the "'" and "e" in "you're".
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    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kazzaerexys View Post
    I'd say that's a bit of faulty logic---the fact that it had to be called "Automatic Colt Pistol" implies that there are pistols that are non-automatic (and non-Colt, for that matter).
    Won't argue with that a bit. My only point was that Americans have been calling them pistols for at least that long. Just using simple deductive reasoning not getting too deep into actual history. Otherwise, the round could have been named ".45ac" automatic colt, or automatic center fire or any number of other things. I am simply referring to the 1911 as being considered a pistol, nothing more.
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    I consider revolvers to be pistols and use the term "automatic" to describe semi-autos.
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    Actually the correct terminology is auto-loader :-P
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    Noun pistol - a firearm that is held and fired with one handpistol - a firearm that is held and fired with one hand
    handgun, shooting iron, side arm

    automatic pistol, automatic - a pistol that will keep firing until the ammunition is gone or the trigger is released
    revolver, six-gun, six-shooter - a pistol with a revolving cylinder (usually having six chambers for bullets)
    semiautomatic, semiautomatic pistol - a pistol that is a semiautomatic firearm capable of loading and firing continuously

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    PISS TOLL=the fee charged to urinate in a public toilet
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    VIP Member Array Majorlk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mel5051 View Post
    Actually the correct terminology is auto-loader :-P
    Or Self-loader.
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