This is a definition of the word "broadside" from TFD

To strike or collide with full on the side: lost control of the truck and broadsided the car.

What does with full mean here?

"full" noun {source TFD}
2. The highest degree or state: living life to the full.

Does it mean that "with full" is "with the highest degree of power or speed"?

  • 3
    I think with belongs with collide and full with on the side! I'm not familiar with broadside as a verb, but to hit something broadside on means to strike it at right angles. Mar 4, 2022 at 14:11
  • I think to 'broadside' is US casual 'to hit another vehicle sideways-on in a collision' Different from e.g. 'rear-ending' . Mar 4, 2022 at 14:24
  • I don't know what TFD is, but I've only heard the idiom as "living life to the fullest"
    – pboss3010
    Mar 4, 2022 at 15:14
  • 1
    I am pretty sure that the TFD is The Free Dictionary. Mar 4, 2022 at 15:31
  • 1
    He broadsided my car. He collided with my car full on the side, i.e. not at the front, or rear, or at an angle. Mar 4, 2022 at 15:33

2 Answers 2


There are several tricky usages here. We usually see full as an adjective. You found a less common usage in which it's a noun. However, it's being used here as an adverb. It's usage 2 in this Merriam-Webster entry:

full adverb
// knew full well they had lied to me
// swung full around
// got hit full in the face

It's more similar in meaning to fully, and this construction is almost always used by following it with a preposition ("full on the side," "full in the face").

As Kate observed, the phrases should be understood as: "[collide with] [full on the side]."

Meanwhile, don't confuse it with the phrasal adjective full-on.


with relates to collide and full is a noun meaning the greatest degree, extent.

[To strike] or [(to) collide with] (how?) [[full] on the side].

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