Ash can: A US Navy term for a Depth Charge, used for attacking enemy submarines. Suggested by its shape. A Depth Charge was a steel cylinder, filled with high explosive and fitted with a simple firing appliance, set off by the pressure of the water and adjustable to explode at any desired depth. Every anti-submarine vessel, destroyers etc., carried a number of depth-charges, dropped over the side at the place where the submarine was believed to be.
References / notes
- Edward Fraser and John Gibbons (1925). Soldier and Sailor Words and Phrases. Routledge, London p.10.
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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