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grenadier

[gren-uh-deer]
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noun
  1. (in the British army) a member of the first regiment of household infantry (Grenadier Guards).
  2. (formerly) a specially selected foot soldier in certain elite units.
  3. (formerly) a soldier who threw grenades.
  4. Also called rat-tail, rat tail. any of several deep-sea fishes of the family Macrouridae, having an elongated, tapering tail.
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Origin of grenadier

From French, dating back to 1670–80; see origin at grenade, -ier2
Related formsgren·a·dier·i·al, adjectivegren·a·dier·ly, adverbgren·a·dier·ship, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for grenadier

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • I sat up straight as a grenadier, my shoulders absurdly stiff.

  • "Spoke like a British Grenadier," cried Billy, with enthusiasm.

    The Fortunes Of Glencore

    Charles James Lever

  • As my eye flashed upon them, they stiffened up like grenadier recruits.

    The O'Ruddy

    Stephen Crane

  • She charges me like a grenadier and asks me to give her—guess a little what!

    The Tragic Muse

    Henry James

  • It went to my heart that the grenadier was out of the question.

    The King's Mirror

    Anthony Hope


British Dictionary definitions for grenadier

grenadier

noun
  1. military
    1. (in the British Army) a member of the senior regiment of infantry in the Household Brigade
    2. (formerly) a member of a special formation, usually selected for strength and height
    3. (formerly) a soldier trained to throw grenades
  2. Also called: rat-tail any deep-sea gadoid fish of the family Macrouridae, typically having a large head and trunk and a long tapering tail
  3. any of various African weaverbirds of the genus EstrildaSee waxbill
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Word Origin

C17: from French; see grenade
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 grenadier

n.

1670s, originally a word for soldiers "who were dexterous in flinging hand-granados" [Evelyn], from French grenadier (15c.), from Middle French grenade "grenade" (see grenade); later "the tallest and finest men in the regiment" [OED].

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper