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Member of a European light-cavalry unit used for scouting, modeled on the 15th-century Hungarian light-horse corps. The brilliantly coloured Hungarian hussar's uniform was imitated in other European armies; it consisted of a busby (high cylindrical cloth cap), a jacket with heavy braiding, and a dolman (loose coat worn hanging from the left shoulder). Several hussar regiments of the British army were converted from light dragoons in the 19th century; they survive today as armoured units.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on hussar, visit Britannica.com.