Word of the Day

Saturday, December 04, 2004

cadre

\KAD-ree; -ray; KAH-dray; -druh\ , noun;
1.
A core or nucleus of trained or otherwise qualified personnel around which an organization is formed.
2.
A tightly knit and trained group of dedicated members active in promoting the interests of a revolutionary party.
3.
A member of such a group.
4.
A framework upon which a larger entity can be built; a scheme.
Quotes:
Trained cadres flowed across the porous border and down the blossoming supply trail through eastern Laos (the Ho Chi Minh Trail).
-- Peter Gay, Pleasure Wars
Around 1880, the year Flaubert died, the French avant-garde was made up of a cadre of bitter, highly self-conscious poets, painters, novelists, and critics.
-- Daniel Okrent, "Twilight of the Boomers", Time, June 12, 2000
The prison's existence was known only to those who worked or were imprisoned there and to a handful of high-ranking cadres, known as the Party Center, who reviewed the documents emerging from S-21 and selected the individuals and the military and other units to be purged.
-- David Chandler, Voices From S-21
The failure of the League of Nations and the shock of Munich had spurred more support, sometimes from names that were widely known, for a federation of free peoples, a union of sovereign states, or whatever similar arrangement might lower the possibility of conflict. Adherents came from the usual cadre of pious dreamers.
-- Hugo Young, This Blessed Plot
Origin:
Upon entering the English language around 1830 via Sir Walter Scott's Introduction to The Lay of the Last Minstrel, this word first meant "framework," and by the 1850s was a term for a group of people. It was borrowed from the French cadre, "a picture frame," from Italian quadro, "framework," from Latin quadrum, "square, four-sided thing."
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