One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Troops specially trained and equipped for carrying out sudden assaults, especially against enemy strongholds; specifically those of the German army during the First World War (1914–18). Compare shock troop, "assault troops". Now chiefly historical.
2In extended use and figurative. The driving force of an activity or movement; a group leading a vigorous challenge or defence.
3The troops of the Sturmabteilung, the paramilitary wing of the Nazi party. Compare "storm trooper". Now historical.
4In singular A detachment of such troops.
Early 20th century; earliest use found in The Times. From storm + troop, after German Sturmtruppe.
storm troop/ˈstɔːm truːp/
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