cap·tain /ˈkæptən ||ˈkæpṃ/
1. A head, or chief officer; as: (a) The military officer who commands a company, troop, or battery, or who has the rank entitling him to do so though he may be employed on other service. (b) An officer in the United States navy, next above a commander and below a commodore, and ranking with a colonel in the army. (c) By courtesy, an officer actually commanding a vessel, although not having the rank of captain. (d) The master or commanding officer of a merchant vessel. (e) One in charge of a portion of a ship's company; as, a captain of a top, captain of a gun, etc. (f) The foreman of a body of workmen. (g) A person having authority over others acting in concert; as, the captain of a boat's crew; the captain of a football team.
A trainband captain eke was he. --Cowper.
The Rhodian captain, relying on . . . the lightness of his vessel, passed, in open day, through all the guards. --Arbuthnot.
2. A military leader; a warrior.
Foremost captain of his time. --Tennyson.
Captain general. (a) The commander in chief of an army or armies, or of the militia. (b) The Spanish governor of Cuba and its dependent islands.
Captain lieutenant, a lieutenant with the rank and duties of captain but with a lieutenant's pay, -- as in the first company of an English regiment.
Cap·tain v. t. To act as captain of; to lead. [R.]
Men who captained or accompanied the exodus from existing forms.
Cap·tain, a. Chief; superior. [R.]
captain jewes in the carcanet. --Shak.
n 1: an officer holding a rank below a major but above a
2: the naval officer in command of a military ship [syn: skipper]
3: a policeman in charge of a precinct [syn: police captain,
4: an officer who is licensed to command a merchant ship [syn:
master, sea captain, skipper]
5: the leader of a group of people; "a captain of industry"
6: the pilot ins charge of an airship [syn: senior pilot]
7: a diningroom attendant who is in charge of the waiters and
the seating of customers [syn: headwaiter, maitre
d'hotel, maitre d']
v : be the captain of a sports team
(1.) Heb. sar (1 Sam. 22:2; 2 Sam. 23:19). Rendered "chief,"
Gen. 40:2; 41:9; rendered also "prince," Dan. 1:7; "ruler,"
Judg. 9:30; "governor,' 1 Kings 22:26. This same Hebrew word
denotes a military captain (Ex. 18:21; 2 Kings 1:9; Deut. 1:15;
1 Sam. 18:13, etc.), the "captain of the body-guard" (Gen.
37:36; 39:1; 41:10; Jer. 40:1), or, as the word may be rendered,
"chief of the executioners" (marg.). The officers of the king's
body-guard frequently acted as executioners. Nebuzar-adan (Jer.
39:13) and Arioch (Dan. 2:14) held this office in Babylon.
The "captain of the guard" mentioned in Acts 28:16 was the
Praetorian prefect, the commander of the Praetorian troops.
(2.) Another word (Heb. katsin) so translated denotes
sometimes a military (Josh. 10:24; Judg. 11:6, 11; Isa. 22:3
"rulers;" Dan. 11:18) and sometimes a civil command, a judge,
magistrate, Arab. _kady_, (Isa. 1:10; 3:6; Micah 3:1, 9).
(3.) It is also the rendering of a Hebrew word (shalish)
meaning "a third man," or "one of three." The LXX. render in
plural by _tristatai_; i.e., "soldiers fighting from chariots,"
so called because each war-chariot contained three men, one of
whom acted as charioteer while the other two fought (Ex. 14:7;
15:4; 1 Kings 9:22; comp. 2 Kings 9:25). This word is used also
to denote the king's body-guard (2 Kings 10:25; 1 Chr. 12:18; 2
Chr. 11:11) or aides-de-camp.
(4.) The "captain of the temple" mentioned in Acts 4:1 and
5:24 was not a military officer, but superintendent of the guard
of priests and Levites who kept watch in the temple by night.
(Comp. "the ruler of the house of God," 1 Chr. 9:11; 2 Chr.
31:13; Neh. 11:11.)
(5.) The Captain of our salvation is a name given to our Lord
(Heb. 2:10), because he is the author and source of our
salvation, the head of his people, whom he is conducting to
glory. The "captain of the Lord's host" (Josh. 5:14, 15) is the
name given to that mysterious person who manifested himself to
Abraham (Gen. 12:7), and to Moses in the bush (Ex. 3:2, 6, etc.)
the Angel of the covenant. (See ANGEL.)