qwasha, noun

Forms:
Also qhwasha, qwash.
Origin:
ZuluShow more Zulu ideophone, used of a crunching sound, as of movement in gravel; here probably echoic (see quotation 1994).
In township English: a home-made rifle.
1989 O. Musi in Drum Apr. 36One veteran policeman out there convinced his higher-ups to grant an amnesty to anyone who surrendered his ‘Qhwasha’ (that is the home-made rifle). There were no takers.
1989 Weekly Mail 5 May 6Our only weapon is the qwasha, says Gadaffi, referring to the home-made guns that make up the armoury of the boys’ army. ‘Down in Moscow they make the best qwashas. A good one costs R120. Some take R1 bullets and others use the big bullets for a shotgun.’
1992 A. Sparks in Guardian Weekly 26 June 17There are stolen revolvers and army rifles, clubs, spears and machetes, and a crude homemade zip gun called a qwash, produced from piping, rubber tubing and springs.
1994 P. Hawthorne in Time 19 Dec. 16A homemade pistol called a ‘quash’ — from the explosive click it makes when fired.
a home-made rifle.
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19891994