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jan·is·sar·y(jăn′ĭ-sĕr′ē) also jan·i·zar·y (-zĕr′ē)
n. pl. jan·is·sar·ies
1. A soldier of the Ottoman Empire in an elite guard organized in the 1300s and abolished in 1826.
2. A member of a group of elite, highly loyal supporters.
[Middle French jehanicere, janissaire, from Old Italian giannizero, from Ottoman Turkish yeñiçeri, new army, Janissary corps : yañı, new (from Old Turkic yaŋı) + çeri, special troops (from Old Turkic çērig, phalanx, order of battle).]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.