cad·​re | \ ˈka-ˌdrā How to pronounce cadre (audio) , ˈkä- How to pronounce cadre (audio) , -drē; especially British ˈkä-də, ˈkā-, -drə \

Definition of cadre

1 : a nucleus or core group especially of trained personnel able to assume control and to train others broadly : a group of people having some unifying relationship a cadre of lawyers a cadre of technicians
2 : a cell of indoctrinated leaders active in promoting the interests of a revolutionary party
3 : a member of a cadre
4 : frame, framework … the current specialisms and cadres of our university curricula …— H. M. McLuhan

Did you know?

To understand cadre, we must first square our understanding of the word's Latin roots. Cadre traces to the Latin quadrum, meaning "square." Squares can make good frameworks—a fact that makes it easier to understand why first French speakers and later English speakers used cadre as a word meaning "framework." If you think of a core group of officers in a regiment as the framework that holds things together for the unit, you'll understand how the "personnel" sense of cadre developed. Military leaders and their troops are well-trained and work together as a unified team, which may explain why cadre is now sometimes used more generally to refer to any group of people who have some kind of unifying characteristic, even if they aren't leaders.

Examples of cadre in a Sentence

claims that the problem will never be solved within the existing cadre of the state bureaucracy
Recent Examples on the Web The Roache-Turners have a cadre of mad scientists and soldiers performing experiments on the ghouls, along with distinct groups of survivors with special abilities — including one who’s a human-zombie hybrid. Noel Murray, Los Angeles Times, 15 Apr. 2022 And the effort to supply the nation’s ever-growing cadre of citizen-warriors, like so many aspects of the nation’s defense, started with volunteers. Marc Santora,, 21 Mar. 2022 Basically, the Jazz felt confident letting Gobert try to disrupt Doncic, enabling them to remain attached to Dallas’ cadre of shooters — who went a collective 9 of 23 in the final 12 minutes. Eric Walden, The Salt Lake Tribune, 26 Feb. 2022 More, a cadre of Club Med employees dressed as an eclectic band of animals paraded through the locker room and attracted an energetic, pint-size following. Washington Post, 9 Dec. 2021 The Man in 2008, then a cadre of aspirants and tour nomads whose compass knew only onward. Nathan Rizzo | Special To The Oregonian, oregonlive, 7 Oct. 2021 Launched earlier this month, the free online portal contains 500,000 pages of articles, podcasts, videos, quotations, and books recommended by an international cadre of book editors, health professionals, and other topic experts. Anne Quito, Quartz, 22 Sep. 2021 Since then, my parents’ hearts race whenever a cadre knocks on the door, or a government organization calls, or a policeman arrives unannounced. Nyrola Elimä, The New Yorker, 21 Dec. 2021 Over the horizon, a cadre of horseback riders slinked toward its destination, some snapping photos on their phone and others proudly placing their arms akimbo. Alice Yin,, 5 Dec. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of cadre

1763, in the meaning defined at sense 4

History and Etymology for cadre

French, from Italian quadro, from Latin quadrum square — more at quarrel

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Last Updated

8 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cadre.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on cadre

Nglish: Translation of cadre for Spanish Speakers

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


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