Thursday, December 22, 2011

Word of the Day 12/22/2011

Echelon (noun)

1: a steplike arrangement
2a : one of a series of levels or grades in an organization or field of activity b : the individuals at such a level

Examples: We heard stories of corruption in the higher echelons of the firm.

"The Horseheads school district is in the upper echelon of upstate school districts, according to a new list created by a Buffalo business publication." -- From an article by Jeff Murray in the Elmira Star-Gazette (New York), November 13, 2011

Did You Know?: "Echelon" is a useful word for anyone who is climbing the ladder of success. It traces back to "scala," a Late Latin word meaning "ladder" that was the ancestor of the Old French "eschelon," meaning "rung of a ladder." Over time, the French word (which is "├ęchelon" in Modern French) came to mean "step," "grade," or "level." When it was first borrowed into English in the 18th century, "echelon" referred specifically to a steplike arrangement of troops, but it now usually refers to a level or category within an organization or group of people.

Merriam-Webster Word of the Day

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