Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of, relating to, or characteristic of members of the armed forces: a military bearing; military attire.
  • adj. Performed or supported by the armed forces: military service.
  • adj. Of or relating to war: military operations.
  • adj. Of or relating to land forces.
  • n. Armed forces: a country ruled by the military.
  • n. Members, especially officers, of an armed force.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Characteristic of members of the armed forces.
  • adj. Relating to armed forces such as the army, marines, navy and air force (often as distinguished from civilians or police forces).
  • adj. Relating to war.
  • adj. Relating to armies or ground forces.
  • n. Armed forces.
  • n. U.S. armed forces in general, including the Marine Corps.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to soldiers, to arms, or to war; belonging to, engaged in, or appropriate to, the affairs of war
  • adj. Performed or made by soldiers
  • n. The whole body of soldiers; soldiery; militia; troops; the army.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Having the position or character of a soldier: pertaining to soldiers; suitable to, characteristic of, or performed by soldiers; soldierly: as, a military man; a military deportment or disposition.
  • Relating or pertaining to war. to the art of war, or to an armed force; adapted to or connected with a state of war; martial; warlike; belligerent: as, the military art; military glory; military history; military equipage; a military expedition.
  • Warlike in method or practice; having relation to the usages or purposes of war; connected with or dependent upon the use of armed force: opposed to civil: as, a military despotism; military government; a military execution. Abbreviated mil., milit.
  • Tactical, relating to the order and arrangement to be observed in the management of an army when it is to march, to engage an enemy, or to be encamped.
  • Technical, including the composition, fabrication, and application of warlike machines, and the practice of military engineering in the erection of offensive and defensive works for the protection of an army, a city, or a country. This branch also comprises the topographical surveys, the building of pontoon and other bridges, the projection and construction of roads, telegraph-lines, railroads, etc., necessary to the operations of an army in the field.
  • n. Soldiers generally; soldiery; officers of the army: commonly with the definite article: as, the occasion was enlivened by the presence of the military.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. of or relating to the study of the principles of warfare
  • adj. characteristic of or associated with soldiers or the military
  • n. the military forces of a nation
  • adj. associated with or performed by members of the armed services as contrasted with civilians

Etymologies

Middle English, from Latin mīlitāris, from mīles, mīlit-, soldier.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French militaire, from Latin mīlitārius, from mīlitis ("soldier"). (Wiktionary)

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