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brevet (bre-VET) noun

A commission promoting a military officer to a higher rank without a corresponding increase in pay.

verb tr.

To promote in rank without a pay increase.


Having a higher rank without an increase in pay.

[From Middle English, literally little letter, from Middle French, from Old French, diminutive of brief (letter), from Latin brevis (short). Other words that have descended from the same Latin root are abbreviate, abridge, brevity, breve, and brumal.]

"Fuller served in the first-ever British Tank Corps as a brevet colonel, but soon fell afoul of military brass over what he saw as its ruinous attachment to `body warfare' over the superior `brain'-driven maneuverability that the age of the tank heralded." Chris Lehmann, Rolling Thunder, The Washington Post, May 12, 2002

This week's theme: words related to the military.


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