war-horse

[ wawr-hawrs ]
/ ˈwɔrˌhɔrs /

noun

a horse used in war; charger.
Informal. a veteran, as a soldier or politician, of many struggles and conflicts.
a musical composition, play, etc., that has been seen, heard, or performed excessively.

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Origin of war-horse

First recorded in 1645–55; war1 + horse
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for war-horse

British Dictionary definitions for war-horse

warhorse
/ (ˈwɔːˌhɔːs) /

noun

a horse used in battle
informal a veteran soldier, politician, or elderly person, esp one who is aggressive
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

Cultural definitions for war-horse

war horse

A person or thing that has seen long service or has lived through many hardships and can be relied on: “That teacher is a real war horse; he has seen the dismissal of ten different principals.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with war-horse

war horse

Also, old war horse. A dependable, frequently performed attraction, as in The opera company is doing nothing but old war horses this season, like, Aïda and La Bohème. This term originated in the mid-1600s for a military charger that had been through many battles. In the 1800s it began to be used for human veterans, and in the mid-1900s for popular productions, especially of musical works.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.