Definition of Indian file in English:

Indian file


  • another term for single file
    • ‘At training, his team ran three kilometres to warm up before finishing the session with fifteen laps of Indian file, an exercise of sprinting and jogging.’
    • ‘Originally, the Italians envisaged frogmen as ‘underwater infantry’ who would walk in Indian file along the bottom of the sea towards their targets.’
    • ‘Scouts moving in Indian file should normally face oncoming traffic and walk on the right hand side of the road, but I am aware that there are divergences of opinion on this point.’
    • ‘Classically, the cells tend to infiltrate as individual rows (single or Indian file) and may form concentric arrays (targetoid pattern).’
    • ‘Coming down in Indian file, Kieren couldn't produce her any later today.’


Mid 18th century: so called because it was believed that North American Indians usually marched in this order.