soldier


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soldier of fortune

1. A soldier who serves the person or organization paying them, rather than their country; a mercenary. Although the nation only had a small population, it boosted the size of its army by hiring soldiers of fortune.
2. A person who seeks adventure or military engagement for money, pleasure, or fame. The novel depicts a soldier of fortune who risks his life for notoriety.
See also: fortune, of, soldier

soldier on

To continue doing something with determination or resolve, despite difficulties or an unlikely chance of succeeding. Though our funding was cut, we decided to soldier on with our work and try to finish the project on our own. Even though they were down by an insurmountable number of goals, you have to admire how they just kept soldiering on.
See also: on, soldier

blow this/that for a game of soldiers

slang A phrase used to dismiss something because it seems too taxing. Well, blow that for a game of soldiers. I'll just return the book tomorrow instead of going out in a snowstorm today.
See also: blow, game, of, soldier, that, this

sod this/that for a game of soldiers

rude slang A phrase used to dismiss something because it seems too taxing. Well, sod that for a game of soldiers. I'll just return the book tomorrow instead of going out in a snowstorm today.
See also: game, of, sod, soldier, that, this

come the old soldier

To attempt to mislead someone or avoid doing something by using one's age as an excuse. Oh, Grandpa, I know you're strong enough to help move these boxes—don't come the old soldier with me!
See also: come, old, soldier

dead soldier

1. An empty bottle from an alcoholic beverage. The yard was littered with dead soldiers the morning after that wild party.
2. A cigarette butt. I was annoyed to find some dead soldiers on the ground, even though there was ashtray nearby.
See also: dead, soldier

old soldier

obsolete A person who is experienced in the ways of the world, especially one who is shrewd or cunning as a result. My uncle was a crafty old soldier, always looking for someway to get rich quick. You're never going to convince an old soldier like her to give you extra time off—she's been around the block and has seen the likes of you before, I can tell you that much!
See also: old, soldier

dead soldier

Also, dead man. An empty liquor, wine, or beer bottle, as in Their trash barrel's full of dead soldiers; they must drink a lot, or That dead man sticking out of your pocket alerted the officer to the fact that you'd been drinking. Dead man has been slang for "empty bottle" since the late 1600s but has been largely replaced by dead soldier, dating from the late 1800s.
See also: dead, soldier

come (or play) the old soldier

use your greater age or experience of life to deceive someone or to shirk a duty. informal
In US nautical slang a soldier or an old soldier was an incompetent seaman.
See also: come, old, soldier

soldier of fortune

an adventurous person ready to take service under any person or state in return for money; a mercenary.
See also: fortune, of, soldier

blow/sodtaboo ˈthis/ˈthat for a game of soldiers

(British English, slang) used by somebody who does not want to do something because it is annoying or involves too much effort: After waiting for twenty minutes more, he thought ‘sod this for a game of soldiers’, and left.
See also: blow, game, of, sod, soldier, that, this

dead soldier

and dead man and dead marine and dead one
1. n. an empty liquor or beer bottle. Toss your dead soldiers in the garbage, please. There’s a dead one under the bed and another in the fireplace!
2. n. a cigarette butt. (Less common than sense 1) The bum found a dead soldier on the ground and picked it up.
See also: dead, soldier

old soldier

1. n. a cigarette or cigar butt; a hunk of tobacco. The tramp bent over to pick up an old soldier off the pavement.
2. n. an empty liquor bottle; an empty beer bottle or can. Larry hid all his old soldiers under the bed.
See also: old, soldier

soldier

1. n. a liquor bottle; an empty liquor bottle. (see also dead soldier.) Toss your soldier into the garbage, please.
2. n. a whole tobacco cigarette. The old man almost fell over trying to pick up the soldier from the sidewalk.

soldier rag

n. a cap to cover a hairdo. The mugger was wearing a soldier rag and threatened me with a gun.
See also: rag, soldier
References in classic literature ?
Just below his window was a shoemaker's apprentice, with leather apron and shoes; he was skipping along so merrily that one of his shoes flew off and fell against the wall, just where the Soldier was sitting peeping through the iron grating.
The shoemaker's boy was very willing to earn four shillings, and fetched the tinder-box, gave it to the Soldier, and--yes--now you shall hear.
The Soldier was already standing on the top of the ladder; but when they wanted to put the rope round his neck, he said that the fulfilment of one innocent request was always granted to a poor criminal before he underwent his punishment.
When he overtook the tall soldier he began to plead with all the words he could find.
The youth, aghast and filled with wonder at the tall soldier, began quaveringly to question him.
The tall soldier faced about as upon relentless pursuers.
But the convoyman took no notice of the word "general" and shouted at the soldiers who were blocking his way.
Then came some merry soldiers who had evidently been drinking.
The eyes of all the soldiers turned toward the women, and while the vehicle was passing at foot pace all the soldiers' remarks related to the two young ones.
And while the Soldier was gone for the clothesline his Majesty continued, "it is well for me to be careful, for my very existence is in danger.
The Soldier now returned with a long line and tied all three firmly together, also lashing them to the body of the Saw-Horse; so there seemed little danger of their tumbling off.
It was the pewter soldier, he that was lost up at the old man's, and had tumbled and turned about amongst the timber and the rubbish, and had at last laid for many years in the ground.
The young wife wiped the dirt off the soldier, first with a green leaf, and then with her fine handkerchief--it had such a delightful smell, that it was to the pewter soldier just as if he had awaked from a trance.
Amid the uproar, the soldiers stood glaring at the people with the fierceness of men whose trade was to shed blood.
The perils shared, the victories won, in the old French War, when the soldiers of the colonies fought side by side with their comrades from beyond the sea, were unforgotten yet.