War Terms

Ms. Lecount's list of terms to know for our unit on war and literature.

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definitions & notes
only words

  1. adjutant

    an officer who acts as an assistant to a more senior officer
  2. aide-de-camp

    an officer who acts as an assistant to a more senior officer
  3. artillery

    large but transportable armament
  4. barricade

    a barrier to impede the advance of an enemy
  5. bayonet

    a knife fixed to the end of a rifle and used as a weapon
  6. blockade

    a war measure isolating an area of importance to the enemy
  7. civil

    of or occurring between or among citizens of the state
  8. regiment

    army unit smaller than a division
  9. cadence

    the accent in a metrical foot of verse
  10. quarter

    one of four equal parts
  11. capitulate

    surrender under agreed conditions
  12. breech

    opening in the barrel of a gun where bullets can be loaded
  13. cavalry

    troops trained to fight on horseback
  14. battle

    a hostile meeting of opposing military forces
  15. lieutenant

    a commissioned military officer
  16. corporal

    affecting the body as opposed to the mind or spirit
  17. convoy

    the act of escorting while in transit
  18. echelon

    level of authority in a hierarchy
  19. emancipate

    free from slavery or servitude
  20. servitude

    state of subjection to an owner or master
  21. skirmish

    a minor short-term fight
  22. furlough

    a temporary leave of absence, especially from military duty
  23. accoutrement

    accessory or supplementary item of equipment or clothing
  24. ration

    a fixed portion that is allotted
  25. holster

    a sheath for carrying a handgun
  26. trajectory

    the path followed by an object moving through space
  27. projectile

    a weapon that is forcibly propelled toward a target
  28. infantry

    an army unit consisting of soldiers who fight on foot
  29. chaplain

    a member of the clergy ministering to some institution
  30. parley

    a negotiation between enemies
  31. reveille

    a signal, usually a bugle call, to get up in the morning
  32. ricochet

    spring back; spring away from an impact
  33. obtuse

    of an angle, between 90 and 180 degrees
  34. roster

    a list of names
  35. reinforcement

    an act performed to strengthen approved behavior
  36. peddler

    someone who travels about selling wares
  37. tactics

    a plan for attaining a particular goal
  38. ally

    a friendly nation
  39. alliance

    the state of being confederated
  40. ottoman

    a low seat or a stool to rest the feet of a seated person
  41. espionage

    the systematic use of spies to obtain secrets
  42. statute

    an act passed by a legislative body
  43. invade

    march aggressively into a territory by military force
  44. plunder

    steal goods; take as spoils
  45. claim

    assert or affirm strongly
  46. blitzkrieg

    a military offensive with intensive aerial bombardment
  47. bombardment

    an attack by dropping explosive devices
  48. detain

    cause to be slowed down or delayed
  49. coercion

    using force to cause something to occur
  50. fascist

    an adherent of right-wing authoritarian views
  51. insurgent

    in opposition to a civil authority or government
  52. regime

    the governing authority of a political unit
  53. rebel

    someone who exhibits independence in thought and action
  54. revolutionary

    markedly new or introducing radical change
  55. loot

    goods or money obtained illegally
  56. neutrality

    nonparticipation in a dispute or war
  57. dominate

    be in control
  58. antiaircraft

    designed for defense from land against air attack
  59. maritime

    relating to ships or navigation
  60. ambush

    concealing yourself and lying in wait to attack by surprise
  61. detonate

    cause to burst with a violent release of energy
  62. contraband

    distributed or sold illicitly
  63. memorial

    a recognition of meritorious service
  64. commemorate

    call to remembrance
  65. code

    a set of rules or principles or laws
  66. confinement

    the state of being enclosed
  67. stockade

    fortification consisting of a fence set firmly for defense
  68. combative

    having or showing a ready disposition to fight
  69. defend

    protect against a challenge or attack
  70. veteran

    a person who has served in the armed forces
  71. strategic

    relating to an elaborate and systematic plan of action
  72. nuclear

    constituting the core or central part
  73. deterrence

    a negative motivational influence
  74. retaliation

    action taken in return for an injury or offense
  75. adaptable

    capable of fitting a particular situation or use
  76. altitude

    elevation above sea level or above the earth's surface
  77. marine

    of or relating to the sea
  78. transport

    move something or somebody around
  79. grunt

    issue a low, animal-like noise
  80. refugee

    an exile who flees for safety
  81. flee

    run away quickly
  82. boatswain

    a petty officer on a merchant ship
  83. coxswain

    the helmsman of a ship's boat or a racing crew
  84. squelch

    suppress or crush completely
  85. detonation

    the act of setting off an explosive
  86. antenna

    one of a pair of mobile appendages on the head of insects
  87. plateau

    a relatively flat highland
  88. region

    the extended spatial location of something
  89. device

    an instrumentality invented for a particular purpose
  90. fragment

    a piece broken off or cut off of something else
  91. perimeter

    a line enclosing a plane area
  92. unorthodox

    breaking with convention or tradition
  93. rural

    living in or characteristic of farming or country life
  94. honorary

    given as an award without the normal duties
  95. ambassador

    a diplomat of the highest rank
  96. namesake

    a person with the same name as another
  97. morale

    a state of individual psychological well-being
  98. indigenous

    originating where it is found
  99. maneuver

    a military training exercise
  100. courage

    a quality of spirit that enables you to face danger or pain
  101. hull

    dry outer covering of a fruit or seed or nut
  102. specialist

    an expert devoted to one occupation or branch of learning
  103. sergeant

    a noncommissioned officer ranking above a corporal
  104. evasion

    the act of physically escaping from something
  105. extraction

    taking out something
  106. withdrawal

    the act of pulling back
  107. subordinate

    an assistant subject to the authority or control of another
  108. convalescent

    returning to health after illness or debility
  109. reconnaissance

    the act of scouting, especially to gain information
  110. pioneer

    one the first colonists or settlers in a new territory
  111. shrapnel

    shell containing lead pellets that explodes in flight
  112. euphemism

    an inoffensive expression substituted for an offensive one
  113. derogatory

    expressive of low opinion
  114. interpret

    make sense of; assign a meaning to
  115. treacherous

    dangerously unstable and unpredictable
  116. hamlet

    a community of people smaller than a village
  117. municipality

    a local district having powers of self-government
  118. struggle

    strenuous effort
  119. offensive

    unpleasant or disgusting especially to the senses
  120. utility

    the quality of being of practical use
  121. yield

    give or supply
  122. encrypt

    convert ordinary language into code
  123. antitank

    designed for defense against armored vehicles
  124. logistics

    supplying an operation with labor and materials as needed
  125. crater

    a bowl-shaped geological formation at the top of a volcano
  126. supercede

    take the place or move into the position of
  127. candidate

    someone who is considered for something
  128. infrastructure

    the basic features of a system or organization
  129. cadre

    a nucleus of military personnel capable of expansion
Created on April 12, 2013
(updated April 18, 2013)