From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

File \File\ (f[imac]l), n. [F. file row (cf. Pr., Sp., Pg., &
   It. fila), LL. fila, fr. L. filum a thread. Cf. Enfilade,
   Filament, Fillet.]
   1. An orderly succession; a line; a row; as:
      (Mil.) A row of soldiers ranged one behind another; -- in
             contradistinction to rank, which designates a row
             of soldiers standing abreast; a number consisting
             the depth of a body of troops, which, in the
             ordinary modern formation, consists of two men, the
             battalion standing two deep, or in two ranks.
             [1913 Webster]

   Note: The number of files in a company describes its width,
         as the number of ranks does its depth; thus, 100 men in
         "fours deep" would be spoken of as 25 files in 4 ranks.
      (b) An orderly collection of papers, arranged in sequence
          or classified for preservation and reference; as,
          files of letters or of newspapers; this mail brings
          English files to the 15th instant.
      (c) The line, wire, or other contrivance, by which papers
          are put and kept in order.
          [1913 Webster]

                It is upon a file with the duke's other letters.
      (d) A roll or list. "A file of all the gentry." --Shak.

   2. Course of thought; thread of narration. [Obs.]
      [1913 Webster]

            Let me resume the file of my narration. --Sir H.
      [1913 Webster]

   3. (computers) a collection of data on a digital recording
      medium treated as a unit for the purpose of recording,
      reading, storage, or indexing; -- such a file is typically
      accessible by computer programs by the use of a file name.
      The data may be of any type codable digitally, such as
      simple ASCII-coded text, complex binary-coded data, or an
      executable program, or may be itself a collection of other

   File firing, the act of firing by file, or each file
      independently of others.

   File leader, the soldier at the front of any file, who
      covers and leads those in rear of him.

   File marching, the marching of a line two deep, when faced
      to the right or left, so that the front and rear rank
      march side by side. --Brande & C. 

   Indian file, or Single file, a line of people marching
      one behind another; a single row. Also used adverbially;
      as, to march Indian file.

   On file, preserved in an orderly collection; recorded in
      some database.

   Rank and file.
      (a) The body of soldiers constituting the mass of an army,
          including corporals and privates. --Wilhelm.
      (b) Those who constitute the bulk or working members of a
          party, society, etc., in distinction from the leaders.
          [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

File \File\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Filed; p. pr. & vb. n.
   1. To set in order; to arrange, or lay away, esp. as papers
      in a methodical manner for preservation and reverence; to
      place on file; to insert in its proper place in an
      arranged body of papers.
      [1913 Webster]

            I would have my several courses and my dishes well
            filed.                                --Beau. & Fl.
      [1913 Webster]

   2. To bring before a court or legislative body by presenting
      proper papers in a regular way; as, to file a petition or
      bill. --Burrill.
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   3. (Law) To put upon the files or among the records of a
      court; to note on (a paper) the fact date of its reception
      in court.
      [1913 Webster]

            To file a paper, on the part of a party, is to place
            it in the official custody of the clerk. To file, on
            the part of the clerk, is to indorse upon the paper
            the date of its reception, and retain it in his
            office, subject to inspection by whomsoever it may
            concern.                              --Burrill.
      [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

File \File\, v. i. [Cf. F. filer.] (Mil.)
   To march in a file or line, as soldiers, not abreast, but one
   after another; -- generally with off.
   [1913 Webster]

   To file with, to follow closely, as one soldier after
      another in file; to keep pace.
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            My endeavors
            Have ever come too short of my desires,
            Yet filed with my abilities.          --Shak.
      [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

File \File\ (f[imac]l), n. [AS. fe['o]l; akin to D. viji, OHG.
   f[imac]la, f[imac]hala, G. feile, Sw. fil, Dan. fiil, cf.
   Icel. [thorn][=e]l, Russ. pila, and Skr. pi[,c] to cut out,
   adorn; perh. akin to E. paint.]
   1. A steel instrument, having cutting ridges or teeth, made
      by indentation with a chisel, used for abrading or
      smoothing other substances, as metals, wood, etc.
      [1913 Webster]

   Note: A file differs from a rasp in having the furrows made
         by straight cuts of a chisel, either single or crossed,
         while the rasp has coarse, single teeth, raised by the
         pyramidal end of a triangular punch.
         [1913 Webster]

   2. Anything employed to smooth, polish, or rasp, literally or
      [1913 Webster]

            Mock the nice touches of the critic's file.
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   3. A shrewd or artful person. [Slang] --Fielding.
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            Will is an old file in spite of his smooth face.
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   Bastard file, Cross file, etc. See under Bastard,
      Cross, etc.

   Cross-cut file, a file having two sets of teeth crossing

   File blank, a steel blank shaped and ground ready for
      cutting to form a file.

   File cutter, a maker of files.

   Second-cut file, a file having teeth of a grade next finer
      than bastard.

   Single-cut file, a file having only one set of parallel
      teeth; a float.

   Smooth file, a file having teeth so fine as to make an
      almost smooth surface.
      [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

File \File\, v. t.
   1. To rub, smooth, or cut away, with a file; to sharpen with
      a file; as, to file a saw or a tooth.
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   2. To smooth or polish as with a file. --Shak.
      [1913 Webster]

            File your tongue to a little more courtesy. --Sir W.
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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

File \File\, v. t. [OE. fulen, filen, foulen, AS. f?lan, fr. f?l
   foul. See Foul, and cf. Defile, v. t.]
   To make foul; to defile. [Obs.]
   [1913 Webster]

         All his hairy breast with blood was filed. --Spenser.
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         For Banquo's issue have I filed my mind. --Shak.
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