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lance corporal

U.S. Marine Corps. an enlisted person ranking between private first class and corporal.
British Military.
  1. a corporal of the lowest rank.
  2. (formerly) a private acting as corporal without increased pay.
Origin of lance corporal
1780-90; lance, shortened form of earlier lancepesade < Middle French lancepessade lowest ranking grade of noncommissioned officer < Italian lancia spezzata superior soldier, literally, broken lance1 (from having shivered many lances, i.e., fought well in many battles) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for lance corporal

lance corporal

a noncommissioned officer of the lowest rank in the British Army
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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