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midshipman

[mid-ship-muh n, mid-ship-] /ˈmɪdˌʃɪp mən, mɪdˈʃɪp-/
noun, plural midshipmen.
1.
a student, as at the U.S. Naval Academy, in training for commission as ensign in the Navy or second lieutenant in the Marine Corps.
Compare cadet (def 2).
2.
British Navy.
  1. an officer of the rank held by young men immediately upon graduating from the government naval schools.
  2. (initial capital letter) the title and rank of such a graduate.
  3. (formerly) one of a class of boys or young men who formed the group from which officers were chosen.
3.
Also called singingfish. any toadfish of the genus Porichthys, having many small luminous organs on the underside and producing a buzzing sound with its air bladder.
Origin of midshipman
1620-1630
First recorded in 1620-30; midship + -man
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for midshipman
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • They made him a midshipman; but, disliking the sea, he was determined to go to America.

    Ned Myers James Fenimore Cooper
  • He served six years as midshipman in the navy, and did not like it.

  • Mr. Janverin, midshipman of the Tigre, and eleven men were wounded.

    At Aboukir and Acre George Alfred Henty
  • "You are taking late to the sea," the midshipman who had not yet spoken remarked.

    At Aboukir and Acre George Alfred Henty
  • On the third morning he put on his midshipman's clothes for the first time.

    At Aboukir and Acre George Alfred Henty
  • midshipman Mayrant, with a large party of sailors, followed.

  • The midshipman promised to do as desired; then the rear-admiral was left alone.

    The Two Admirals J. Fenimore Cooper
  • The midshipman retired to his own cabin, and Harry went on deck.

British Dictionary definitions for midshipman

midshipman

/ˈmɪdˌʃɪpmən/
noun (pl) -men
1.
a probationary rank held by young naval officers under training, or an officer holding such a rank
2.
any of several American toadfishes of the genus Porichthys, having small light-producing organs on the undersurface of their bodies
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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Word Origin and History for midshipman
n.

c.1600, so called because he was stationed amidships when on duty (see amid).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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