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"There was a time when one old eccentric guy with a notebook could do something important to science. Now even the resources of a major university are often not enough."
- Jerry Pournelle

Laser Rifle  
  A laser weapon shaped (and fired) like a traditional rifle.  

As far as I know, this is the first reference to the term "laser rifle." Obviously, there were many precursors in the form of pistols (like Raymond Gallun's 1937 proton pistol) or rifles that fired an energy beam.

The Iranian reached back into the locker and got a pair of laserifles.
From Door to Anywhere, by Poul Anderson.
Published by Galaxy Magazine in 1966
Additional resources -

You might be interested in several other early "energy weapons" - the Electric rifle from Tom Swift and the leyden ball from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Take a look at a modern-day laser rifle (as well as a nice picture of a sixties "phaser rifle" in the article Military sets PHASR on stun.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Door to Anywhere
  More Ideas and Technology by Poul Anderson
  Tech news articles related to Door to Anywhere
  Tech news articles related to works by Poul Anderson

Laser Rifle-related news articles:
  - ZKZM-500 LASER Assault Rifle

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