- soldiers, especially infantrymen, who run the greatest risk of being wounded or killed in warfare.
Origin of cannon fodder
First recorded in 1890–95
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for cannon fodder
Do you think I'm going to send him over there to be cannon-fodder?Dangerous Days
Mary Roberts Rinehart
The flower of Oxford was too valuable to be used as cannon-fodder.Adventures of a Despatch Rider
W. H. L. Watson
What they can hope to achieve by so prodigal a waste of "cannon-fodder" is difficult to see.
Hannibal in his victories lost almost nobody but Gauls, his cannon-fodder, who fought with poor shields and without armor.Battle Studies
Charles-Jean-Jacques-Joseph Ardant du Picq
This "cannon-fodder" would go into battle without enthusiasm, would perform what was required of them like obedient machines.The Nameless Castle
- men regarded as expendable because they are part of a huge 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