Definition of ambulance in English:
- Six to seven emergency vehicles and four ambulances are also provided.
- An additional phase of the new development could incorporate other emergency services such as ambulances and coastguard.
- We assume all duties which are carried out by our ambulance service are emergencies.
verb[with object and adverbial of direction] Back to top
- Patients seriously hurt in road accidents and heart attack victims would have to be ambulanced out of town.
- They ambulanced him fast yesterday out of the nursing home with a serious infection, high fever and blood pressure into the hospital's intensive care unit.
- My husband called my doctor who had done my first surgery and I was ambulanced to the hospital.
First used in the Crimean War, an ambulance was originally a mobile temporary hospital—a field hospital—that followed an army from place to place. The term was later applied to a wagon or cart used for carrying wounded soldiers off the battlefield, which in turn led to its modern meaning. Ambulance comes from the French hôpital ambulant, literally ‘walking hospital’: the root is Latin ambulare, ‘to walk’, which gave us words such as alley (Late Middle English), amble (Middle English), and early 17th-century ambulate (a formal way of saying ‘walk’). Ambulance chaser is a wry nickname for a lawyer. The first example of the term, from 1897, tells us that ‘In New York City there is a style of lawyers known to the profession as “ambulance chasers”, because they are on hand wherever there is a railway wreck, or a street-car collision…with…their offers of professional services.’
- US English dictionary
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