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[in-fuh n-tree] /ˈɪn fən tri/
noun, plural infantries.
soldiers or military units that fight on foot, in modern times typically with rifles, machine guns, grenades, mortars, etc., as weapons.
a branch of an army composed of such soldiers.
Origin of infantry
1570-80; < Italian infanteria, equivalent to infante boy, foot-soldier (see infant) + -ria -ry
Related forms
noninfantry, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for infantry
  • They make good infantry soldiers and well-behaved prisoners.
  • Elsewhere, infantry units roll out on patrols or return for midnight meals.
  • In the neighboring house, an infantry uniform hangs in the closet, the campaign cap perfectly folded on the shoulder.
  • Its barrel was too short to achieve the range of standard infantry rifles.
  • My partner's base on the other hand was surrounded by neutral apartment buildings, which he quickly garrisoned with infantry.
  • In fact this may well spur the introduction of these component based rounds into general infantry use.
  • Few armies enjoy being sent to the streets to restore civil order, and the tanks were not accompanied by any infantry.
  • Probably something along the lines of: more infantry, fewer tanks.
  • By sending infantry over the surrounding heights, however, the army was able to outflank the resistance swiftly.
  • The new enemy was agile and light, and outmatched the lumbering, heavily armored cavalry and infantry.
British Dictionary definitions for infantry


noun (pl) -tries
  1. soldiers or units of soldiers who fight on foot with small arms
  2. (as modifier): an infantry unit
Abbreviation Inf, inf
Word Origin
C16: from Italian infanteria, from infante boy, foot soldier; see infant
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for infantry

1570s, from French infantrie, from older Italian, Spanish infanteria "foot soldiers, force composed of those too inexperienced or low in rank for cavalry," from infante "foot soldier," originally "a youth," from Latin infantem (see infant). Meaning "infants collectively" is recorded from 1610s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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