noun[often treated as plural]
Swiss mercenaries employed as a special guard, formerly by sovereigns of France, now only at the Vatican.
- Outraged, Henry announced his plan to introduce his Swiss guards into the suburbs of the capital, an unusual and provocative act that was almost certain to enrage and frighten the urban population.
- The Pope was shorn of all his Temporal Power, with the exception of his palaces, diplomats, and Swiss guards.
- In 1789 the army consisted of household troops, which included the French and Swiss guards, regular forces and the militia of about 75,000.
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