[kuh-man-doh, -mahn-]
noun, plural commandos, commandoes.
any of the specially trained Allied military units used for surprise, hit-and-run raids against Axis forces.
a member of any of these units. Compare ranger ( def 3 ).
any military unit organized for operations similar to those of the commandos of World War II.
a member of a military assault unit or team trained to operate quickly and aggressively in especially urgent, threatening situations, as against terrorists holding hostages.

1785–95; < Afrikaans kommando raid, raiding party, a unit of militia < Portuguese commando unit commanded, noun derivative of commandar to command Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To commando
World English Dictionary
commando (kəˈmɑːndəʊ)
n , pl -dos, -does
1.  a.  an amphibious military unit trained for raiding
 b.  a member of such a unit
2.  the basic unit of the Royal Marine Corps
3.  (originally) an armed force raised by Boers during the Boer War
4.  (modifier) denoting or relating to a commando or force of commandos: a commando raid; a commando unit
5.  informal go commando to wear no underpants
[C19: from Afrikaans kommando, from Dutch commando command, from French commander to command]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

Afrikaans, "a troop under a commander," from Port., lit. "party commanded," in use c.1809 during the Peninsula campaign, then from 1834, in a S.African sense, of military expeditions of the Boers against the natives; modern sense is from 1940, first attested in Winston Churchill's writings (originally
shock troops to repel threatened Ger. invasion of England), who may have picked it up during the Boer War. Phrase going commando "not wearing underwear" attested by 1996, U.S. slang.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
It is so easy to be a keyboard commando, as they say, and write whatever you want and not think of the repercussions.
It was a precise commando raid made possible by intelligence, planning, and diplomacy.
His bowlegged waddle heightened the ridiculous effect of tight trousers tucked into boots in imitation of a commando uniform.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature