French Bullet Terminology


September 20, 2008, 12:16 AM
Sabot is pronounced "SAY-BOW" and every part of a bullet/cartridge is a French word we Americans use and often mispronounce. How the French became masters of bullet terminology eludes me, but does not change the fact. How do you pronounce "Ogive?" cliffy

If you enjoyed reading about "French Bullet Terminology" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
Old Grump
September 20, 2008, 12:28 AM
jive like the dance style 'Oh - jive'

Had an officer I served with and shot with in the Navy used to pronounce sabot 'say- boat' most of my friends 'sah bot' I don't have a clue to where I learned to pronounce it correctly. I still avoid the word meplat, don't mind writing it but not sure how its pronounced.

September 20, 2008, 01:02 AM
You only pronounce the consonant if there is an 'e' behind it.

say-bo, no 'e'
oh-jive, 'e'

September 20, 2008, 01:13 AM
The French were leaders in military technologies during development of gunpowder weaponry ~1600s-1870s. During this time, French weaponry, military science (siege craft, engineering) and tactics were considered some of the best in the world. Because of this, many of their words and terms are still in common use today.

Don't forget the Minie ball, invented by french captain Claude Miniť. Made rifles a practical military weapon.

Freelance Tax Collector
September 20, 2008, 01:36 AM
Sabot is french for 'shoe'. The origins of the word 'sabotage' had do do with Luddites putting their shoes in weaving looms to jam them up.

September 20, 2008, 01:49 AM
I know 8mm Lebel is a hoot to shoot! I was shooting mine at the range one day. I reloaded from scratch so I had never shot an original round before. The guy next to me holds a round out in his hand and asks "Does that shoot this?" I said, yes, that's 8mm lebel. He said he found it in a bunch of family stuff, probably from his grandfather from the war and he's been carrying in his range bag in the hopes of giving it to someone and gave it to me. Probably from WWI.

Well, curiousity got the better of me, so I loaded it in, pulled the trigger, it went click....wait.....wait.....bang! Did seem a little weak compared to what I was shooting in reloads. But that was really cool to shoot a round more than likely from the French in WWI.

September 20, 2008, 04:58 AM

Sabot is actually pronounced Sah-bo. Never pronounce the last letter of a French word.

Ogive is Oh-geeve

Meplat is Mey-plah

I'm French so I'm right! :D

Eric F
September 20, 2008, 06:54 AM
French Bullet Terminology
Dont shoot we surender!.........LOL sorry just had to do it:p

September 20, 2008, 08:12 AM
Heh, I thought this was going to be a link to the Dissident Frogman's media primer (

September 20, 2008, 08:23 AM

You were lucky to get a 90+ year old cartridge to light up. Age doesn't improve primers.

September 20, 2008, 08:32 AM
barman, that would be o-zheeve, n'est-ce pas?

If you enjoyed reading about "French Bullet Terminology" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!