Definition of colonel in English:

colonel

Line breaks: col|onel
Pronunciation: /ˈkəːn(ə)l
 
/

noun

  • 1A rank of officer in the army and in the US air force, above a lieutenant colonel and below a brigadier or brigadier general.
    More example sentences
    • Some of these officers are now lieutenant colonels and colonels in the Army Reserve.
    • As a result, lieutenant colonels, colonels, and general officers must operate in a more complex task environment than during the Cold War.
    • In the past year I have met midshipmen, Air Force cadets, colonels at the Army War College, officers in the Pentagon, air and naval crews at sea, reserve and retired officers, and a variety of civilian defense analysts.
  • 1.1 informal short for lieutenant colonel.

Derivatives

colonelcy

noun (plural colonelcies)
More example sentences
  • Loans from his elder brother, now Lord Mornington (later Marquess Wellesley), purchased a majority and lieutenant colonelcy in the 33rd Regiment in 1793.
  • Despite an apology to the king for ‘unguarded expressions’ he was dismissed his post as lord-lieutenant of the West Riding and lost his colonelcy in the militia.
  • Captain John C. Putnam, a clerk before the war, allegedly lobbied Governor Andrew for the colonelcy of the regiment.

Origin

mid 16th century: from obsolete French coronel (earlier form of colonel), from Italian colonnello 'column of soldiers', from colonna 'column', from Latin columna. The form coronel, source of the modern pronunciation, was usual until the mid 17th century.

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