'ARMS, n. plu. L. arma.
1. Weapons of offense, or armor for defense and protection of the body.
2. War; hostility.
Arms and the man I sing.
To be in arms, to be in a state of hostility, or in a military life.
To arms is a phrase which denotes a taking arms for war or hostility; particularly, a summoning to war.
To take arms, is to arm for attack or defense.
Bred to arms denotes that a person has been educated to the profession of a soldier.
3. The ensigns armorial of a family; consisting of figures and colors borne in shields, banners, &c., as marks of dignity and distinction, and descending from father to son.
4. In law, arms are any thing which a man takes in his hand in anger, to strike or assault another.
5. In botany, one of the seven species of fulcra or props of plants, enumerated by Linne and others. The different species of arms or armor, are prickles, thorns, forks and stings, which seem intended to protect the plants from injury by animals.
Sire arms, are such as may be charged with powder, as cannon, muskets, mortars, &c.
A stand of arms consists of a musket, bayonet, cartridge-box and belt, with a sword. But for common soldiers a sword is not necessary.
In falconry, arms are the legs of a hawk from the thigh to the foot.