dragoon (n.)

1620s, from French dragon "carbine, musket," because the guns the soldiers carried "breathed fire" like dragons (see dragon). Also see -oon.

dragoon (v.)

1680s, literally "to force by the agency of dragoons" (which were used by the French kings to persecute Protestants), from dragoon (n.). Related: Dragooned; dragooning.

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