Meaning of powder monkey in English:

powder monkey


  • 1 historical A boy employed on a sailing warship to carry powder to the guns.

    ‘But Gaston, despite this, had never known true hunger, because from the day he learnt to walk, had been employed upon a ship as a powder monkey, and his father as an able seaman.’
    • ‘Britain is at war with France, and being a powder monkey is one of the most dangerous jobs - Sam's predecessor was blown to smithereens.’
    • ‘But several captains wrote to support the women, whom they said had been seamstresses, medical assistants and even powder monkeys.’
    • ‘The powder monkeys stood ready to begin their task and Captain John Cooke and his officers paced the quarter deck or at their respective stations.’
    1. 1.1North American informal A person who works with explosives.