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[mahr-tn-et, mahr-tn-et] /ˌmɑr tnˈɛt, ˈmɑr tnˌɛt/
a strict disciplinarian, especially a military one.
someone who stubbornly adheres to methods or rules.
1670-80; after General Jean Martinet (died 1672), French inventor of a system of drill
Related forms
martinetish, adjective
martinetism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for martinet
  • While not slighting the captain's martinet personality, he gives a performance that is filled with empathetic understanding.
  • The reprobate with the heart of gold, or the old-line martinet who resents the incursions of progress.
  • It is a triangle romance, with a martinet of a divisional superintendent doing a noble deed during an exciting moment.
British Dictionary definitions for martinet


a person who maintains strict discipline, esp in a military force
Derived Forms
martinetish, adjective
martinetism, noun
Word Origin
C17: from French, from the name of General Martinet, drillmaster under Louis XIV
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 martinet
1676, "system of strict discipline," reputedly from the name of Col. Jean Martinet a drillmaster of the Fr. army during the reign of Louis XIV. The meaning "an officer who is a stickler for strict discipline" is first attested 1779.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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