Etymology
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military (adj.)

mid-15c., militari, "pertaining to or befitting soldiers; used, done, or brought about by soldiers," from Old French militaire (14c.) and directly from Latin militaris "of soldiers or war, of military service, warlike," from miles (genitive militis) "soldier," a word of unknown origin.

Perhaps ultimately from Etruscan, or else meaning "one who marches in a troop," and thus connected to Sanskrit melah "assembly," Greek homilos "assembled crowd, throng." De Vaan writes, "It is tempting to connect mīlia [pl.] 'thousand(s)', hence *mīli-it- 'who goes with/by the thousand' ...." Related: Militarily. Old English had militisc, from Latin.

Military police is from 1827. Military age, at which one becomes liable to military service, is by 1737. Military-industrial complex was coined 1961 in the farewell speech of U.S. president Dwight D. Eisenhower.

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military (n.)

"soldiers generally," 1757, from military (adj.); commonly only with the definite article. Earlier, "a military man" (1736).

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unit (n.)

1560s, "single number regarded as an undivided whole," alteration of unity on the basis of digit. Popularized in John Dee's English translation of Euclid, to express Greek monas (Dee says unity formerly was used in this sense). Meaning "single thing regarded as a member of a group" is attested from 1640s. Extended sense of "a quantity adopted as a standard of measure" is from 1738. Sense of "group of wards in a hospital" is attested from 1893.

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embed (v.)

1778, "to lay in a bed (of surrounding matter)," from em- (1) + bed (n.). Originally a geological term, in reference to fossils in rock; figurative sense is by 1835; meaning "place (a journalist) within a military unit at war" is from 2003 and the Iraq war. Related: Embedded; embedding.

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guidon (n.)

"small flag," originally one borne by a military unit to direct movements, 1540s, from French guidon (16c.), from Italian guidone "battle standard," from guidare "to direct, guide," from Old Provençal guidar "to guide," from Proto-Germanic *witanan "to look after, guard" (from PIE root *weid- "to see"). Compare guide (v.).

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Mameluke 

Egyptian dynasty 1254-1517, originally a military unit comprised of Caucasian slaves, from French mameluk and directly from Arabic mamluk "purchased slave," literally "possessed," from past participle of malaka "he possessed" (compare Arabic malik, Hebrew melekh "king"). It is also the source of Portuguese Mameluco (n.) "mestizo, cross-breed between a white and a native Brazilian."

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photon (n.)

"unit of electromagnetic radiation," 1926, from photo- "light" + -on "unit." Related: Photonic.

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unitary (adj.)

1847, "characterized by unity or uniformity;" 1865, "of or relating to a unit;" see unit + -ary.

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cadre (n.)

"permanently organized framework of a military unit" (the officers, etc., as opposed to the rank-and-file), 1851; earlier "framework, scheme" (1830); from French cadre, literally "a frame of a picture" (16c.), so, "a detachment forming the skeleton of a regiment," from Italian quadro, from Latin quadrum "a square," which related to quattuor "four" (from PIE root *kwetwer- "four"). The communist sense of "group or cell of workers trained to promote the interests of the Party" is from 1930.

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monad (n.)

1610s, "unity, arithmetical unit," 1610s, from Late Latin monas (genitive monadis), from Greek monas "unit," from monos "alone" (from PIE root *men- (4) "small, isolated"). In Leibnitz's philosophy, "an ultimate unit of being, a unit of the universal substance" (1748); he apparently adopted the word from Giordano Bruno's 16c. metaphysics, where it referred to a hypothetical primary indivisible substance at once material and spiritual. Related: Monadic; monadism.

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