ar·​my | \ ˈär-mē How to pronounce army (audio) \
plural armies

Definition of army

1a : a large organized body of armed personnel trained for war especially on land
b : a unit capable of independent action and consisting usually of a headquarters, two or more corps, and auxiliary troops
c often capitalized : the complete military organization of a nation for land warfare
2 : a great multitude an army of birds
3 : a body of persons organized to advance a cause

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Synonyms for army


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Examples of army in a Sentence

the armies of Alexander the Great He left home and joined the army after he graduated from high school. The company employs an army of lawyers to handle its legal affairs. They sent in a whole army of trained technicians. The organization was founded by a dedicated army of volunteers.
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Recent Examples on the Web Personio, a German startup that helps a small army of small businesses across Europe manage common HR tasks like onboarding and payroll has raised a $270 million series round at a $6.3 billion valuation. Iain Martin, Forbes, 11 Oct. 2021 The applause equally seemed to honor the small army of people who were finally back at work at the Met: chorus members, stagehands, lighting technicians, makeup artists, costume designers, ticket-takers, ushers, and the rest. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, 11 Oct. 2021 After a small army of people took the stage when the O Brother, Where Art Thou? Paul Grein, Billboard, 5 Oct. 2021 There is comfort in the familiarity of Q (Ben Whishaw) showing Bond his latest whiz-bang life-saving gizmo, or Bond polishing off a drink after dispatching a small army of bad guys. Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic, 28 Sep. 2021 The sequence is a shoot-out with Craig's super spy 007 and Ana de Armas' fellow agent Paloma facing off against a small army of SPECTRE goons at a Cuban mansion. Clark Collis,, 28 Sep. 2021 That meant coordinating a small army of employees across two restaurants, three kitchens, a bar and a dine-in movie theater. Alex Demarban, Anchorage Daily News, 24 Sep. 2021 Disney dispatched a small army of volunteers to sort food donations. Kate Santich,, 23 Sep. 2021 First, a small army of TikTok and Reddit users flooded the reporting mechanism with false claims in an attempt to overwhelm the system. Lily Hay Newman, Wired, 8 Sep. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'army.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of army

circa 1522, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for army

Middle English armee, armye "host of armed men, naval fleet, military expedition," borrowed from Anglo-French armé, armee, from armer "to arm entry 2" + -ee, suffix of action or result (going back to Vulgar Latin *-āta, noun derivative from feminine of Latin -ātus, past participle ending of Latin first-conjugation verbs)

Note: Compare Spanish armada "military force, fleet of warships"—see armada.

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Dictionary Entries Near army

arm wrestling


army ant

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Statistics for army

Last Updated

18 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Army.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for army



English Language Learners Definition of army

: a large group of soldiers organized to fight battles on land
: the part of a country's military forces that includes soldiers who are trained to fight on land
: a large number of people or things that are involved in some activity together


ar·​my | \ ˈär-mē How to pronounce army (audio) \
plural armies

Kids Definition of army

1 : a large body of soldiers trained for land warfare
2 often capitalized : the complete military organization of a nation for land warfare
3 : a great number of people or things an army of volunteers

More from Merriam-Webster on army

Nglish: Translation of army for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of army for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about army


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