Definition of officer in English:


Line breaks: of¦fi|cer
Pronunciation: /ˈɒfɪsə


  • 1A person holding a position of authority, especially one with a commission, in the armed services, the mercantile marine, or on a passenger ship: he is also a serving officer in the army
    More example sentences
    • Anderson later served as a warrant officer and commissioned officer in the Army Reserve.
    • The hardest workers among you may become chief petty officers, warrant officers and commissioned officers.
    • We have more women commissioned officers than the Active Army, even though we're about 60 percent smaller.
    committee member, official, office-holder, office-bearer, board member, public servant, administrator, commissioner, executive, functionary, bureaucrat, dignitary
    derogatory apparatchik
  • 1.1A policeman or policewoman: Special Constables provide valuable support to full-time officers tougher sentences for attacks on police officers
    More example sentences
    • The 33-year-old was interviewed by Garda officers at the police station at Dublin Airport.
    • A procedure which left it to individual officers in police stations to perform some sort of balancing exercise would, it was said, be unworkable.
    • In addition to mounted police, motorcyclists and special constables, undercover officers will mingle with crowds.
    police officer, policeman, policewoman, PC, WPC, officer of the law, detective, DC; British constable; North American roundsman, trooper, peace officer, lawman; French gendarme, flic
    informal cop, pig, woodentop
    British informal copper, busy, bizzy, plod, rozzer, bobby
    North American informal narc, gumshoe, bear, uniform
    Australian/New Zealand informal demon, walloper, John Hop
    informal , • dated tec, dick, flatfoot, flattie
    archaic peeler, bluebottle, finger, bogey, runner
  • 1.2A bailiff.
    More example sentences
    • They are interrupted by a knock on the door and Val is horrified to find a bailiff officer on her doorstep.
    • Special bailiffs are officers appointed by the sheriff at the request of a plaintiff for the purpose of executing a particular process.
    • Strictly, this is not evidence, although it is accepted, being the representations of a responsible officer of the court.
  • 2A holder of a public, civil, or ecclesiastical office: a probation officer the Chief Medical Officer
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    • During months of bombing, there were no public health officers to issue death certificates, which explains the lack of official statistics.
    • Where a court or a public officer wrongly refuses jurisdiction the exercise of the jurisdiction can be commanded by a writ of mandamus.
    • Government officers should see public property as their own and seek to protect it.
    representative, agent, deputy, messenger, envoy
  • 2.1A holder of a senior post in a society, company, or other organization: a chief executive officer
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    • Directors, officers and other senior financial officers set the tone for ethical behavior within any organization.
    • Its August survey of banks' senior loan officers says business loans are increasingly available.
    • Francis becomes chief marketing officer and managing director at the Wayne, Pa., company.
  • 3A member of a certain grade in some honorary orders, such as the grade next below commander in the Order of the British Empire.
    More example sentences
    • It was attended in a body by the officers and members of the Yukon order of Pioneers.
    • The band's guitar player, Jimmy Page, is now an officer of the British empire.
    • An officer of the Order of Canada, he received a distinguished service award from the Canadian Society for Nutritional Sciences in 1990.


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  • 1Provide with military officers: the aristocracy wielded considerable power, officering the army
    More example sentences
    • The Gendarmerie (local constabulary trained and officered by Marines), supported by the Marine brigade, tracked down and killed Peralte and Batraville.
    • It was six months before Andrew got a command, but then of troops purposely ill-equipped, poorly officered and virtually untrained.
    • The British officer corps was still dominated by the ‘gentleman’ and remained essentially a working-class Army officered by the upper classes.
  • 1.1Act as the commander of (a unit): foreign mercenaries were hired to officer new regiments
    More example sentences
    • The Streltsy and the Cossacks were professional units but they were officered by foreigners.
    • The division's fighting elements were 8,000 Philippine Scouts, officered by Americans, a US infantry regiment some 2,000 strong, and a regiment of artillery.
    • Thus most of the 380,000 blacks who served in the Army were in labor units officered by whites.


Middle English: via Anglo-Norman French from medieval Latin officiarius, from Latin officium (see office).

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