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1. Motivated solely by a desire for monetary or material gain.
2. Hired for service in a foreign army.
n. pl. mer·ce·nar·ies
1. One who serves or works merely for monetary gain; a hireling.
2. A professional soldier hired for service in a foreign army.

[Middle English mercenarie, a mercenary, from Old French mercenaire, from Latin mercēnnārius, from mercēs, wages, price.]

mer′ce·nar′i·ly adv.
mer′ce·nar′i·ness n.
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References in periodicals archive ?
into the stark mercenariness of industrial mass production.
Allen was suspicious of the mercenariness of State funding for writers, suggesting it might demystify poetry.