1. One who watches or guards; specifically, a soldier set to guard an army, camp, or other place, from surprise, to observe the approach of danger, and give notice of it; a sentry. "The sentinels who paced the ramparts." (Macaulay)

2. Watch; guard. "That princes do keep due sentinel."

3. <zoology> A marine crab (Podophthalmus vigil) native of the Indian Ocean, remarkable for the great length of its eyestalks.

Synonyms: sentinel crab.

Origin: F. Sentinelle (cf. It. Sentinella); probably originally, a litle path, the sentinel's beat, and a dim. Of a word meaning, path; cf. F. Sente path. L. Semita; and OF. Sentine, sentele, senteret, diminutive words. Cf. Sentry.

(01 Mar 1998)

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