A generic term used to refer to any revolver chambered for the .38 S&W Special. The most famous examples are the Smith & Wesson Model 10 and Model 36 'Chief's Special.' This is perhaps one of the best chocies for ANYONE seeking a no-frills, close range, defensive cartridge. It isn't the most powerful, with so-so ballistics, but a couple of .38s in the center mass will end most life threatening encounters.
I bought myself a Model 10 .38 to keep under the matress, just in case any drunkard thugs get any ideas...