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lance corporal

U.S. Marine Corps. an enlisted person ranking between private first class and corporal.
British Military.
  1. a corporal of the lowest rank.
  2. (formerly) a private acting as corporal without increased pay.
Origin of lance corporal
1780-90; lance, shortened form of earlier lancepesade < Middle French lancepessade lowest ranking grade of noncommissioned officer < Italian lancia spezzata superior soldier, literally, broken lance1 (from having shivered many lances, i.e., fought well in many battles) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for lance corporal
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It was at Dieval that my rank as lance corporal was confirmed.

    A Yankee in the Trenches R. Derby Holmes
  • I had thought up to then that a lance corporal was pretty near as important as a brigadier.

    A Yankee in the Trenches R. Derby Holmes
  • Where was the lance corporal who invariably confirmed his captain's commands with an "as your Lordship pleases?"

  • "No, nor another chance to bite," grinned the second, whom Stuyvesant now recognized as the lance corporal of artillery.

    Ray's Daughter Charles King
  • One of the pipers, lance corporal Milne, was shot through both legs; but still continued to play his pipes, in a sitting position.

  • lance corporal Wedgewood, in charge of the gun, remained awake to clean it.

British Dictionary definitions for lance corporal

lance corporal

a noncommissioned officer of the lowest rank in the British Army
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
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