rise through the ranks


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Related to rise through the ranks: broke ranks

rise through the ranks

Also, rise from the ranks; come up through the ranks. Work one's way to the top, as in He's risen through the ranks, starting as a copyboy and ending up as senior editor. Originally this term was used for an officer who had worked his way up from the rank of private, a rare feat. It was being applied to nonmilitary advances by the mid-1800s. Also see come up, def. 4.
See also: rank, rise, through

rise through (or from) the ranks

1 (of a private or a non-commissioned officer) receive a commission. 2 advance from a lowly position in an organization by your own efforts.
See also: rank, rise, through

come up/rise through the ˈranks

after starting your career at the bottom or low down in an organization, finally reach a high position in it: The new managing director has come up through the ranks, which is quite unusual these days.
In the military, the ranks refers to the position of ordinary soldiers rather than officers. Some may become officers if they have the right qualities.
See also: come, rank, rise, through, up