One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Chiefly Military History. Used to denote any of various bodies of troops which have been, or were at one time, newly constituted.
2Australian History. In form New Guard. A right-wing paramilitary organization active in New South Wales during the 1930s; a member of this organization.
3The most recently enlisted members of an organization, especially those who are seen as representatives or advocates of change. Also: those who are at the forefront of a social or political movement.
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in Littell's Living Age. From new + guard.
new guard/ˌnjuː ˈɡɑːd/
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