One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A civilian official invested with the rank and responsibilities of a military officer and with judicial powers enabling him to act as a local administrator and magistrate.
- ‘They referred me to the Field Cornet, who denied the use of explosive bullets.’
- ‘Later that day Commandant de Beer and Field Cornet Grobbelaar came personally to the laager to urge Gen. Cronje to attempt his escape.’
2A rank in the army equivalent to that of lieutenant.
- ‘I've assigned him the rank of Field Cornet, the Boer equivallent of a non-commissioned officer.’
- ‘The play has a number of characters with the rank of field-cornet, operating with British forces to quell the rebellion of 1815.’
Translating South African Dutch veld kornet, from veld ‘field’ + kornet, specifying a military rank.
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