Definition of army in English:



  • 1[treated as singular or plural] An organized military force equipped for fighting on land.

    ‘the two armies were in position’
    [as modifier] ‘army officers’
    • ‘All the village men were fighting alongside the two armies, the Corbett army having come to join in.’
    • ‘There was very little formal structure by way of military rank in Viking armies.’
    • ‘While driving them to the border he was stopped by an Iranian army patrol and forced to shoot and kill two soldiers.’
    • ‘More than a fight between armies, the Middle East conflict is a clash between two national stories.’
    • ‘Only the Utuku, of all the peoples known to me in the world, equip and organize their armies in that manner.’
    • ‘Many times in our past we have seen enemy fleets in the channel and enemy armies encamped in the continental ports.’
    • ‘It will also be allowed to equip its army, run a police force and all of the departments of state.’
    • ‘The ploy worked and the Anglo-Dutch army united with the armies of the margrave of Baden and Eugene of Savoy.’
    • ‘The cost of maintaining such huge armies in the field would be prohibitive.’
    • ‘Even so it never envisaged itself as much more than an auxiliary force to the armies of Prussia and Austria.’
    • ‘A country's capabilities depend very much on how her force is divided between armies and fleets.’
    • ‘In effect he was an officer cadet in an army that doubled as military academy for young noblemen on the Continent.’
    • ‘The transport of land armies by sea and their support ashore by naval forces actually predate warfare at sea.’
    • ‘His pronouncements cannot bring down governments, or send armies off to fight and die.’
    • ‘How do navies, air forces and armies learn from experience and why is it that so often the wrong lessons are learned?’
    • ‘These days, great armies fighting each other are a thing of the past.’
    • ‘In practice armies, even at the height of a campaign, often spent most of their time sitting around doing nothing.’
    • ‘Camp followers shared the military fortunes of the armies they accompanied.’
    • ‘Bob, an army warrant officer, agreed to have his sperm frozen when he was diagnosed with a brain tumour.’
    • ‘Officers from an army bomb disposal unit carried out a controlled explosion on the package.’
    armed force, fighting force, defence force, military force, the military, land force, soldiery, infantry, militia, horde
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    1. 1.1The part of a country's military force trained to fight on land.
      ‘he joined the army at 16’
      • ‘In last five years, none of the young men living there has been healthy enough to join the army.’
      • ‘Stewart joined the army at 18 despite his mother's concerns over life in the military.’
      • ‘He joined the army in 1808 but struggled for promotion because he was not an aristocrat.’
      • ‘The only option for youth was to join the army or go into town in search of a job.’
      • ‘Ron was training to be a Baptist lay preacher when he decided that his duty was to his country and he joined the army.’
      • ‘He was young, had only just joined the army and had had very little training.’
      • ‘He was right on one front - Steve did indeed join the army and worked for several years in bomb disposal.’
      • ‘He had joined the army as a drummer boy and had served in India before the outbreak of the First World War.’
      • ‘When he left boarding school in England, he joined the army and served in the Royal Artillery.’
      • ‘Until the Crimean War, the Russian army was trained to fight battles like Borodino.’
      • ‘Pupils in Preston are signing up to join the army one day a week while studying for their GCSEs.’
      • ‘Now is the time to train as a nurse, join the army or make yourself indispensable to the government in some other way.’
      • ‘For me, reporting for duty on a strike day would be like joining the army and then refusing to go to war.’
      • ‘The number of those willing to join the army has been going down in the recent years.’
      • ‘On leaving the College he decided to take up a military career and, when war broke out with Spain he joined the army.’
      • ‘His work in Cambridge was interrupted by World War I when he worked on the land rather than join the army.’
      • ‘And he declared that he would want to fight alongside his men if he joined the army.’
      • ‘By the age of 14 she had two ambitions: to join the army and to compete in the Olympics.’
      • ‘It was an unhappy experience and he eventually ran away to join the army.’
      • ‘He then joined the army, motivated solely by a desire to learn combat and survival skills.’
  • 2A large number of people or things.

    ‘an army of photographers’
    • ‘It has an army of loyal fans which consider the GTi to be the most fun you can have on four wheels.’
    • ‘The international gambling industry has hired an army of lobbyists to stack the odds in its favour.’
    • ‘He is now attracting an army of fans, and keeps winning every time he steps up to a new racing division.’
    • ‘This is done through local councils who hire armies of lawyers to fight the airport and its army of lawyers.’
    • ‘He's got his own website and an army of fans who will agree with everything he says.’
    • ‘The weight he bears, though, is just as heavy, but it is one his growing army of fans loads on him.’
    • ‘There are two armies of cells fighting in the body - the army of the healthy cells and the army of the cancer cells.’
    crowd, swarm, multitude, horde, host, mob, gang, throng, stream, mass, body, band, troop, legion, flock, herd, pack, drove, sea, array
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Late Middle English: from Old French armee, from armata, feminine past participle of Latin armare to arm.