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battalion

[buh-tal-yuh n] /bəˈtæl yən/
noun
1.
Military. a ground force unit composed of a headquarters and two or more companies or similar units.
2.
an army in battle array.
3.
Often, battalions. a large number of persons or things; force:
battalions of bureaucrats.
Origin
1580-1590
1580-90; < Middle French bataillon < Italian battaglione large squadron of soldiers, equivalent to battagli(a) battaglia + -one augmentative suffix
Related forms
subbattalion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for bat-talion

battalion

/bəˈtæljən/
noun
1.
a military unit comprised of three or more companies or formations of similar size
2.
(usually pl) any large array
Word Origin
C16: from French bataillon, from Old Italian battaglione, from battaglia company of soldiers, battle
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
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Word Origin and History for bat-talion
battalion
1580s, from M.Fr. bataillon, from It. battaglione "battle squadron," from dim. of V.L. battalia "battle," from L. bauttere "to beat" (see batter (v.)). Specific sense of "part of a regiment" is from 1708.
"Madame, lui répondit-il, ne vous y fiez pas: j'ay tôujours vû Dieu do coté des gros Batallions." [E.Boursault, 1702]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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