Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A commissioned rank formerly used in the US Navy that was above captain and below rear admiral. Abolished in 1899, it was restored temporarily during World War II.
  • noun One who holds this rank.
  • noun Used as an unofficial designation for a captain in the British Navy temporarily in command of a fleet division or squadron.
  • noun The senior captain of a naval squadron or merchant fleet.
  • noun The presiding officer of a yacht club.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun An officer in the navy next in rank below a rear-admiral and above a captain.
  • noun By courtesy or by extension— The senior captain when three or more ships of war are cruising in company.
  • noun The senior captain of a line of merchant vessels.
  • noun The president of a yachting-club or of an organization of boat-clubs.
  • noun The convoy or leading ship in a fleet of merchantmen, which carries a light in her top to conduct the other ships.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (U. S. Navy) An officer who ranks next above a captain; sometimes, by courtesy, the senior captain of a squadron. The rank of commodore corresponds with that of brigadier general in the army.
  • noun (British Navy) A captain commanding a squadron, or a division of a fleet, or having the temporary rank of rear admiral.
  • noun A title given by courtesy to the senior captain of a line of merchant vessels, and also to the chief officer of a yachting or rowing club.
  • noun A familiar for the flagship, or for the principal vessel of a squadron or fleet.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun military, nautical A naval officer holding a rank between captain and rear admiral.
  • noun nautical A (temporary) commander over a collection of ships who is not an admiral.
  • noun nautical The president of a yacht club
  • noun US, military, nautical A commodore admiral
  • noun US, military, nautical A rear admiral (lower half)

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

  • noun a commissioned naval officer who ranks above a captain and below a rear admiral; the lowest grade of admiral

Etymologies

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

[Obsolete commandore, probably from Dutch komandeur, commander, from French commandeur, from Old French, from comander, to command; see command.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Dutch kommandeur, from French commandeur, from Old French comandeor "commander".

Examples

  • September, 1855, he had been promoted to the rank of captain, which, prior to the Civil War, was the highest grade in the United States Navy; the title commodore, then so frequently applied to the older officers of the service, being simply one of courtesy given to a captain who had commanded a squadron of several vessels, but who did not thereby cease to be borne as a captain upon the Navy Register.

    Admiral Farragut

  • The commodore was a big man, tall and broad-shouldered, and his ex-wife had been fond of telling him that his “aura” frequently preceded him, even through a closed door.

    Harbinger

  • The commodore was a big man, tall and broad-shouldered, and his ex-wife had been fond of telling him that his “aura” frequently preceded him, even through a closed door.

    Harbinger

  • Now, Captain, you must call the commodore, or whoever else you feel you must consult about this matter, and see to it that whatever ‘security measures’ are required are put swiftly in place—for I will not linger here another two days while that slander on my crew lies smarting in my mind, and those who committed it sit about congratulating themselves.

    Rihannsu: The Bloodwing Voyages

  • Now, Captain, you must call the commodore, or whoever else you feel you must consult about this matter, and see to it that whatever ‘security measures’ are required are put swiftly in place—for I will not linger here another two days while that slander on my crew lies smarting in my mind, and those who committed it sit about congratulating themselves.

    Rihannsu: The Bloodwing Voyages

  • Now, Captain, you must call the commodore, or whoever else you feel you must consult about this matter, and see to it that whatever ‘security measures’ are required are put swiftly in place—for I will not linger here another two days while that slander on my crew lies smarting in my mind, and those who committed it sit about congratulating themselves.

    Rihannsu: The Bloodwing Voyages

  • The commodore was a man of medium height, slender, with hair so blond it was almost white.

    Timetrap

  • The commodore was a man of medium height, slender, with hair so blond it was almost white.

    Timetrap

  • The commodore was a man of medium height, slender, with hair so blond it was almost white.

    Timetrap

  • "We'll be back in half an hour," called the commodore, as they rowed away from the schooner.

    Captain Scraggs or, The Green-Pea Pirates

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