Origin of strafe; from German phrase Gott strafe England (God punish England) used in World War I
transitive verbstrafed, straf·ing, strafes
Origin of strafeFrom German (Gott) strafe (England), (God) punish (England), a common World War I slogan, from strafen, to punish, from Middle High German strafen, to contest, admonish.
(third-person singular simple present strafes, present participle strafing, simple past and past participle strafed)
- To attack (ground targets) with automatic gunfire from a low-flying aircraft.
- (intransitive, video games) to sidestep; to move sideways without turning. A core mechanic of most first-person shooters.
- An attack of machine-gun or cannon fire from a low-flying aircraft.
- (video games) A sideways movement without turning.
German strafe (“punish"), a conjugated form of strafen (“punish") the British saw in German expressions like "Gott strafe England" ("God punish England") during the First World War.