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sentry

[sen-tree]
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noun, plural sen·tries.
  1. a soldier stationed at a place to stand guard and prevent the passage of unauthorized persons, watch for fires, etc., especially a sentinel stationed at a pass, gate, opening in a defense work, or the like.
  2. a member of a guard or watch.
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Origin of sentry

1605–15; short for sentrinel, variant of sentinel
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for sentry

sentry

noun plural -tries
  1. a soldier who guards or prevents unauthorized access to a place, keeps watch for danger, etc
  2. the watch kept by a sentry
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Word Origin

C17: perhaps shortened from obsolete centrinel, C16 variant of sentinel
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 sentry

n.

1610s, originally "watchtower;" perhaps a shortened variant of sentinel, which had a variant form centrinel (1590s); or perhaps worn down from sanctuary, on notion of "shelter for a watchman." Meaning "military guard posted around a camp" is first attested 1630s. Sentry-box is from 1728.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper