An Air Torpedo is the universal name in the war for a type of elongated trench mortar bomb, fitted with balancing planes or "fins," which gave the projectile something of the appearance of a torpedo. Torpedoes contain, and are actuated by, self-propelling mechanism. The naval service torpedo was dropped by aeroplanes. Its course and depth for running below the surface are set before being dropped. Employed by the "Dart" type of sea-plane, the RN "Torpedo", as a word, was the name given to a species of fish which defends itself by giving an aggressor and electric shock. (From torpere, to benumb).
References / notes
- Edward Fraser and John Gibbons (1925). Soldier and Sailor Words and Phrases. Routledge, London p.4.
Glossary of terms and customs
This page forms part of our glossary of words and phrases of the Armed Forces of the United Kingdom of Great Britain during the Great War, which also includes: technicalities, trench slang, expressions in everyday use, nicknames, sobriquets, the titles and origins of British and Commonwealth Regiments, and warfare in general. Please feel free to help expand and improve this content.
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