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franc-tireur

[frahn-tee-rœr]
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noun, plural francs-ti·reurs [frahn-tee-rœr] /frɑ̃ tiˈrœr/. French.
  1. a sharpshooter in the French army.

Origin of franc-tireur

First recorded in 1800–10
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for franc-tireur

Historical Examples

  • I see that yesterday a Franc-tireur was tried for breaking his musket when ordered to march.

    Diary of the Besieged Resident in Paris

    Henry Labouchre

  • A footfall sounded on the dead leaves behind him, and a franc-tireur touched him on the shoulder.

    Lorraine

    Robert W. Chambers

  • Sure enough, around the bend in the road slunk a franc-tireur, loaded down with what appeared to be mail-sacks.

    Lorraine

    Robert W. Chambers

  • The franc-tireur nodded with a ghastly smile and glanced down at his dripping gunstock.

    Lorraine

    Robert W. Chambers

  • Is a peasant or franc-tireur to be allowed to endanger hundreds of those lives by removing a rail or laying a stone upon the line?


British Dictionary definitions for franc-tireur

franc-tireur

noun
  1. a sniper
  2. a guerrilla or irregular soldier

Word Origin

C19: from franc free + tireur shooter, from tirer to shoot, of unknown origin
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

Word Origin and History for franc-tireur

n.

"sharpshooter of the irregular infantry," 1808, French, literally "free-shooter," from franc "free" (see frank) + tireur "shooter," from tirer "to draw, shoot" (see tirade). A term from the French Revolution.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper