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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Commander \Com*mand"er\, n. [Cf. F. commandeur. Cf. Commodore, Commender.] 1. A chief; one who has supreme authority; a leader; the chief officer of an army, or of any division of it. [1913 Webster] A leader and commander to the people. --Is. lv. 4. [1913 Webster] 2. (Navy) An officer who ranks next below a captain, -- ranking with a lieutenant colonel in the army. [1913 Webster] 3. The chief officer of a commandery. [1913 Webster] 4. A heavy beetle or wooden mallet, used in paving, in sail lofts, etc. [1913 Webster] Commander in chief, the military title of the officer who has supreme command of the land or naval forces or the united forces of a nation or state; a generalissimo. The President is commander in chief of the army and navy of the United States. Syn: See Chief. [1913 Webster]