ser·​geant | \ ˈsär-jənt How to pronounce sergeant (audio) \

Definition of sergeant

2 obsolete : an officer who enforces the judgments of a court or the commands of one in authority
3 : a noncommissioned officer ranking in the army and marine corps above a corporal and below a staff sergeant broadly : noncommissioned officer
4 : an officer in a police force ranking in the U.S. just below captain or sometimes lieutenant and in England just below inspector

Examples of sergeant in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Officer Shimanek was demoted to officer from his previous rank of sergeant with the opportunity to reapply to the position after one year. Allyson Waller, New York Times, "Man Sues Police After Being Pepper-Sprayed While Filming Son’s Arrest," 27 Dec. 2020 That ultimately led the police chief to demote Shimanek from the rank of sergeant to officer in September. Dana Branham, Dallas News, "Man sues Keller officers after he was arrested, pepper-sprayed in what he says was retaliation," 24 Dec. 2020 The bureaucratic mindlessness of a sergeant who wouldn’t unlock the ammunition supply without orders, despite the base being under attack, still gets his blood boiling. Peter D. Kramer, USA TODAY, "79 Decembers later, Pearl Harbor survivor's memories won't dim: 'I will never forgive and I will never forget'," 8 Dec. 2020 The shooting at Olive and Hollygrove streets may have been retaliation for Reeder’s killing, according to what an NOPD sergeant said a public meeting in October. Matt Sledge,, "Feds: New Orleans man suspected in deadly quadruple shooting in Hollygrove," 28 Dec. 2020 The Army sergeant accused of murdering three people and injuring three more in a weekend shooting at an Illinois bowling alley may have post-traumatic stress disorder, his lawyer said Monday. Tim Stelloh, NBC News, "Green Beret charged in mass shooting that left three dead may have PTSD, lawyer says," 28 Dec. 2020 The sergeant said the man drove recklessly out of the parking lot and went south into San Marcos. David Hernandez, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Vehicle theft suspect arrested after pursuit in North County," 27 Dec. 2020 The Boston Police Department did not say why the sergeant's name wasn't released and did not respond Saturday to a request for comment. NBC News, "Boston sergeant placed on leave as videos of George Floyd protests prompt investigations," 20 Dec. 2020 Two police sources said the sergeant who oversaw the raid was not the regular supervisor for the officer listed on the warrant. Peter Nickeas, CNN, "Behind the mistaken raid by Chicago Police on an innocent social worker's home," 19 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sergeant.' 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 sergeant

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sergeant

Middle English, servant, attendant, sergeant, from Anglo-French sergant, serjant, from Latin servient-, serviens, present participle of servire to serve

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Time Traveler for sergeant

Time Traveler

The first known use of sergeant was in the 13th century

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Statistics for sergeant

Last Updated

18 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sergeant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2021.

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How to pronounce sergeant (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sergeant

: an officer of low rank in the army or marines
: an officer in a police force with a rank below captain or lieutenant


ser·​geant | \ ˈsär-jənt How to pronounce sergeant (audio) \

Kids Definition of sergeant

1 : a noncommissioned officer in the army or marine corps ranking above a corporal or in the air force ranking above an airman first class
2 : an officer in a police force

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