echelon

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See also: Echelon and échelon

English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

A ladder leading to the vaults under the pedestal of the former National Kaiser Wilhelm Monument in Berlin, Germany. The word echelon is derived from French and Latin words meaning “ladder”.

Borrowed from French échelon (rung; echelon), from échelle (ladder) + -on (suffix forming diminutives). Échelle is derived from Latin scāla (ladder), from scandō (to ascend, climb), from Proto-Indo-European to jump.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

echelon (plural echelons)

  1. A level or rank in an organization, profession, or society.
  2. (cycling) A line of riders seeking maximum drafting in a crosswind, resulting in a diagonal line across the road.
  3. (military) A formation of troops, ships, etc., in diagonal parallel rows. [from late 18th c.]

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Verb[edit]

echelon (third-person singular simple present echelons, present participle echeloning, simple past and past participle echeloned)

  1. (transitive) To form troops into an echelon.

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