soldier

1 of 2

noun

sol·​dier ˈsōl-jər How to pronounce soldier (audio)
1
a
: one engaged in military service and especially in the army
b
: an enlisted man or woman
c
: a skilled warrior
2
: a militant leader, follower, or worker
3
a
: one of a caste of wingless sterile termites usually differing from workers in larger size and head and long jaws
b
: one of a type of worker ants distinguished by exceptionally large head and jaws
4
ˈsō-jər How to pronounce soldier (audio)
ˈsōl-
: one who shirks work
soldierly adjective or adverb
soldiership noun

soldier

2 of 2

verb

soldiered; soldiering ˈsōl-jə-riŋ How to pronounce soldier (audio)
ˈsōlj-riŋ

intransitive verb

1
a
: to serve as a soldier
b
: to behave in a soldierly manner
c
: to push doggedly forward
usually used with on
soldiered on to the end
2
: to make a pretense of working while really loafing

Examples of soldier in a Sentence

Noun Many soldiers were wounded in combat. one of the goals of war is to keep as many soldiers as possible from being killed
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Videos on social media Saturday appeared to show soldiers raising the Russian flag over one of the plant's buildings. Geir Moulson, Kerstin Sopke, Illia Novikov and Barry Hatton The Associated Press, arkansasonline.com, 18 Feb. 2024 But soldiers posting videos on social media provided a window into how dangerous movement in the area had become. Constant Méheut, New York Times, 18 Feb. 2024 Mariia, 25, a Ukrainian soldier, is considering cryopreservation of her eggs now that the law is being passed. Svitlana Vaslova, CNN, 18 Feb. 2024 Videos on social media Saturday appeared to show soldiers raising the Russian flag over one of the plant’s buildings. Illia Novikov and Barry Hatton, The Christian Science Monitor, 17 Feb. 2024 Adra: What’s happened since October is that the settlers who used to attack us with sticks and stones are now the actual soldiers who are controlling everything around us. Nick Vivarelli, Variety, 17 Feb. 2024 It was created specifically for soldiers in the US military and is geared to work even in intense environments—like a literal battlefield. Tanyel Mustafa, Glamour, 16 Feb. 2024 After the war began, Biden led a swift response against Russia, calling for tough economic sanctions on the country and leading efforts to provide supplies to Ukrainian soldiers. Kimberlee Speakman, Peoplemag, 15 Feb. 2024 Trip Cullman is back to direct the century-traversing tale, in which a woman embarks on a journey of familial discovery after finding a photo of an anonymous soldier in her grandmother’s home. Thomas Floyd, Washington Post, 14 Feb. 2024
Verb
Protect Whoopi Goldberg and Sara Haines' cue cards from massive water spillages at all costs, for the ladies of The View are soldiering through the ongoing Hollywood writers strike by relying on small pieces of paper. Joey Nolfi, EW.com, 3 May 2023 Los Angeles students and school employees soldiered through a challenging, drenching Monday — with about 63% of students and about 90% of teachers and other staff making their way to campuses as the city worked through the 10th wettest day ever recorded locally. Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times, 5 Feb. 2024 As Margot Robbie soldiers through awards season in vibrant Barbiecore, other stars are opting for a softer shade of pink. Nicola Fumo, Peoplemag, 9 Jan. 2024 Despite legions of folks online who like to insist otherwise, having an epidural to ease the pain or soldiering through those contractions med-free are both perfectly fine choices. Kristi Pahr, Parents, 8 Sep. 2023 The little prince soldiered through the festivities though not without some signature cheeky facial expressions. Kate Hogan, Peoplemag, 6 May 2023 If China tries to soldier through its outbreak, without reimposing public health measures or ramping up vaccinations, scientists are concerned that many more may needlessly die. Benjamin Mueller, New York Times, 29 Dec. 2022 By hoarding minerals, the hollow osteoderms could have allowed Rapetosaurus to soldier on in an unforgiving environment. Ed Yong, Discover Magazine, 2 Dec. 2011 The city’s designers, respectfully, chose to soldier on. Elizabeth Paton, New York Times, 20 Sep. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'soldier.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English soudeour, from Anglo-French soudeer, soudeour mercenary, from soudee shilling's worth, wage, from sou, soud shilling, from Late Latin solidus solidus

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1647, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of soldier was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near soldier

Cite this Entry

“Soldier.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/soldier. Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

soldier

1 of 2 noun
sol·​dier ˈsōl-jər How to pronounce soldier (audio)
1
a
: a person in military service and especially in the army
b
: an enlisted person
2
: a worker in something strongly believed in
3
: a termite or ant with a large head and jaws that is a member of a caste that protects the colony
soldierly adjective

soldier

2 of 2 verb
soldiered; soldiering ˌsōlj-(ə-)riŋ How to pronounce soldier (audio)
: to serve as or act like a soldier

More from Merriam-Webster on soldier

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