the rank and file

Definition of the rank and file

1 :the people in the army, navy, air force, etc., who are not officers
2 :the members of a group or organization who are not leaders
  • The rank and file is/are unhappy with the chairman's decision.

Word by Word Definitions

rank play
  1. : luxuriantly or excessively vigorous in growth

  2. : offensively gross or coarse : foul

  3. : grown too large

  1. : row, series

  2. : a row of people

  3. : a line of soldiers ranged side by side in close order

  1. : to arrange in lines or in a regular formation

  2. : to determine the relative position of : rate

  3. : to take precedence of

file play
  1. : a tool usually of hardened steel with cutting ridges for forming or smoothing surfaces especially of metal

  2. : a shrewd or crafty person

  1. : to rub, smooth, or cut away with or as if with a file

  1. : defile, corrupt

  1. : to arrange in order for preservation and reference

  2. : to place among official records as prescribed by law

  3. : to send (copy) to a newspaper

  1. : a device (such as a folder, case, or cabinet) by means of which papers are kept in order

  2. : roll, list

  3. : a collection of papers or publications usually arranged or classified

  1. : single file

  2. : any of the rows of squares that extend across a chessboard from one player's side to the other player's side

  1. : to march or proceed in single file

  1. : powdered young leaves of sassafras used to thicken soups or stews


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