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rank and file (n.)

1590s, in reference to the horizontal and vertical lines of soldiers marching in formation; thence generalized to "common soldiers" (1796) and "common people, general body" of any group (1860).

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Definitions of rank and file from WordNet

rank and file (n.)
the ordinary members of an organization (such as the enlisted soldiers of an army);
the strike was supported by the union rank and file
Synonyms: rank
rank and file (n.)
people who constitute the main body of any group;
From wordnet.princeton.edu

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