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From Middle English sergeant, sergeaunt, serjent, serjaunt, serjawnt, sergant, from Old French sergeant, sergent, serjant, sergient, sergant ‎(sergeant, servant), from Medieval Latin servientem, accusative of serviens ‎(a servant, vassal, soldier, apparitor), from Latin serviēns ‎(serving), present participle of serviō ‎(serve, be a slave to). More at servant.



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sergeant ‎(plural sergeants)

  1. UK army rank with NATO code OR-6, senior to corporal and junior to warrant officer ranks.
  2. The highest rank of noncommissioned officer in some non-naval military forces and police.
    • 1928, Lawrence R. Bourne, chapter 13, Well Tackled![1]:
      “Yes, there are two distinct sets of footprints, both wearing rubber shoes—one I think ordinary plimsolls, the other goloshes,” replied the sergeant.
  3. (law, historical) A lawyer of the highest rank, equivalent to the doctor of civil law.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Blackstone to this entry?)
  4. (Britain, historical) A title sometimes given to the servants of the sovereign.
    sergeant surgeon, i.e. a servant, or attendant, surgeon
  5. A fish, the cobia.


Related terms[edit]