Definition of sergeant major in US English:

sergeant major


  • 1A noncommissioned officer in the US Army or Marine Corps of the highest rank, above master sergeant and below warrant officer.

    • ‘He travelled the world and rose to the rank of sergeant major but retired after 18 years due to his condition.’
    • ‘Six more soldiers received letters of reprimand, including a battalion commander and battalion operations sergeant major who were immediately relieved of duty.’
    • ‘8mm film footage taken by a sergeant major formerly stationed in Entebbe was shown to familiarize the commandos with the airport.’
    • ‘An SF sergeant major produced an American flag that he had carried in Iraq during the Gulf War and had brought to Afghanistan.’
    • ‘He was once considered for change of rank to sergeant major by the Commandant of the Marine Corps so he could be the top enlisted Marine.’
    • ‘How is it going to be received by the sergeant major or the colonel who is there in the audience?’
    • ‘Moreover, the sergeant major's wife, Hazel, began planning an extensive program for Academy student wives as well as the distaff side of the faculty and staff.’
    • ‘He is a retired Signal Corps sergeant major who served in the U.S. Army for 30 years.’
    • ‘The sergeant major that followed him just glared at me as I wished him a nice day.’
    • ‘For others, it may be the concept of a general officer or a sergeant major who brings ‘chosen’ subordinates up through the ranks guiding them towards the ‘good jobs’ to achieve promotions.’
    • ‘The conference is open to Active and Reserve component battalion-level and above CSS leaders in the ranks of sergeant major and above and joint service equivalents.’
    • ‘Focus on being competent in the job you have: don't immediately plan for a career with the goal of becoming the sergeant major or chief of staff of the Army.’
    • ‘As some have put it, it takes 25 years to make a good sergeant major.’
    • ‘A retired U.S. Army sergeant major, he now serves as the civilian caretaker, a U.S. government position.’
    • ‘It has been a year and a half since I became sergeant major of the Army.’
    • ‘He is public affairs adviser to the sergeant major of the Army.’
    • ‘Only days earlier, some Soldiers here were undoubtedly surprised after they were halted at a TCP and instead of an MP, the sergeant major approached them.’
    • ‘He served throughout the war in the West, and became a sergeant major.’
    • ‘Finally, we found the Office of the Chief, Army Reserve and greeted the sergeant major.’
    • ‘The second is a fascinating account of his life in the army, where, refusing an officer's commission, he rose to sergeant major as a gunnery instructor.’
  • 2A warrant officer in the British army.

    • ‘Instead of mechanically obeying orders, the gallant chaps might leap to the defence of a female comrade facing the wrath of the sergeant major, thus destroying the group's cohesion.’
    • ‘Alan, a sergeant major in the Royal Marine reserves, received his call-up papers two days before he was due to be mobilised.’
    • ‘The former sergeant major was once the British Army's top sniper in the province and was known as a lethal shot during the height of the Ulster troubles in the 70s.’
    • ‘You don't dress the sergeant major down in front of the troops, it is too demoralising.’
    • ‘He worked in the Joint Operations Centre in Iraq for six months from August 2003 to January this year as the operations sergeant major, responsible for the 15-member team that kept the centre running.’
    • ‘He looked about the room, like a sergeant major inspecting barracks.’
    • ‘Built like a sergeant major, she has this parade ground habit of issuing orders, not requests.’
    • ‘For one thing, he was put on a charge, not what you would expect for a battle-hardened sergeant major in Britain's most famous World War Two army.’
    • ‘Less than three years later, aged 27, he was suddenly promoted directly from private to sergeant major.’
    • ‘At about 9pm our sergeant major came up to where we were to inquire how we had managed.’
    • ‘They have also discovered that the first landlord, who took over in 1826, was an ex sergeant major of the cavalry with a medal from Waterloo.’
    • ‘The pace stick - a hinged measuring device, which measures a sergeant major's stride - is used to standardise the pace at which troops march.’
    • ‘‘I'm not a jumped up sergeant major barking orders at people,’ he said.’
    • ‘The former sergeant major will join about 20 other decorated soldiers on the trip, which is one of the events which will mark the 60th anniversary of Victory in Japan Day.’
    • ‘A by-product of the mobile phone menace is the mobile caller - instead of sitting still and mumbling into the contraption like any semi-respectable phone user, he swaggers up and down yelling into the thing like a sergeant major on parade.’
    • ‘For some reason the sergeant major had decided to choose me to vent his anger on.’
    • ‘One of her three sons is an army sergeant major.’
    • ‘My Catholic sergeant major saved my life and carried me to a field hospital.’
    • ‘The senior non-commissioned member of a British unit is its regimental sergeant major.’
    • ‘In the event, the beekeeper was victorious and only one man, a former sergeant major, was stung on the forehead.’
  • 3A fish with boldly striped sides that lives in warm seas, typically on coral reefs.

    Abudefduf saxatilis, family Pomacentridae

    • ‘During lunchtime, tourists and snorkellers swarm the beach to watch the baby blacktips, sergeant majors and butterflyfish.’
    • ‘Blue Beach, which along with Green offers the best snorkeling - an abundance of blue tangs, queen angelfish, sergeant majors, and spotted eagle rays in the water - is a mile long, and the dirt road keeps going for three miles past it.’
    • ‘Fish are fed in this area, so shoals of angelfish, surgeonfish, damsels and sergeant majors approach divers without fear.’
    • ‘The yellowtail snappers, sergeant majors and occasional parrotfish displayed no fear of us at all.’
    • ‘Holding the chain railing, we followed our leader and had up-close encounters with yellow tails, sergeant majors, blue tang, trumpet fish, and other reef dwellers.’


sergeant major

/ˈˌsärjənt ˈmājər//ˈˌsɑrdʒənt ˈmeɪdʒər/