3 entries found for maneuver.
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Main Entry: 1ma·neu·ver
Pronunciation: mschwa-primarystressn(y)ü-vschwar
Function: noun
Etymology: from French manœuvre "a military exercise," from early French maneuvre "work done by hand," from Latin manuopera (same meaning), derived from earlier manu operare "to work by hand," from manu, a form of manus "hand," and operare "to work" --related to MANAGE, MANUAL, OPERATE
1 a : a planned movement of troops or ships b : a training exercise by armed forces
2 : a clever or skillful move or action <avoided an accident by a quick maneuver>
Word History The word maneuvre was first used in early French to refer to "work done by hand." It was borrowed from the Latin noun manuopera, used in the Middle Ages with the same meaning. The Latin word was formed from the phrase manu operari, meaning "to work by hand." In time, the French came to use the spelling manœuvre for "a military exercise involving the movement of soldiers or ships." In the 18th century, when French military influence was strong in Europe, manœuvre was borrowed into English. Americans later came to spell it maneuver. The military sense has remained and has given rise to the more general sense of "a clever move or action."

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