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Machine gun vs. machine-gun

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  • Machine gun is a noun phrase that is defined as a weapon that fires bullets rapidly as long as the trigger is held down. When hyphenated, as machine-gun, the word becomes an adjective used to describe things that happen very quickly. Machine-gun can also be a verb, to shoot something with a machine gun.

    However, in practice, the common spelling is machine gun for both verb and adjective forms.

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