- a native African police officer or soldier, especially one serving a colonial administration.
Origin of askari
1885–90; < Swahili < Arabic ʿaskarī soldier, equivalent to ʿaskar army (< Persian lashkar; cf. lascar) + -ī suffix of appurtenance
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for askaris
"Hope they don't wing one another," he remarked of the askaris' volley.
His load was missing: evidently one of the askaris had taken it up.
He was prevented from replying by the approach of Simba at the head of eight of the askaris.
Shouldn't we order out our askaris with their guns to make the parade?
In the meantime Simba, with great enthusiasm, continued his drill of the askaris.
- (in East Africa) a soldier or policeman
C19: from Arabic: soldier
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012