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RANK. The order or place in which certain officers are placed in the army and navy, in relation to others, is called their rank.
     2. It is a maxim, that officers of, an inferior rank are bound to obey all the lawful commands of their superiors, and are justified for such obedience.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
At least it is difficult to be extended to include possible complex and additive regularization schemes, such as the combination of sparsity with low rankness or structural sparsity.
The increased emphasis on the rankness of leprous smells in late medieval society coincided with emerging perceptions of, and anxieties about, the disease as contagious.
In both cases, Claudius is the cause of congestion which hinders the circulation of the body (the eventual reason for Old Hamlet's death: 1.5.64-70): the rankness of Denmark is condensed in Claudius and he appears to be similar to a blockage in the vein of the country that, in order to restore healthy circulation, has to be removed.
A knock at the door destroys the dream, and the narrator then perceives the room as a dreary, dilapidated, cold room with the "rankness of desolation" and once again ruled by time (118).
Late in the evening, he strikes a match and watches as the insects move in every direction: "I caught two, killed them, and smelled their queer rankness. They were full of my blood" (425).
His proclamation that English literature has been hampered by its inability to front the essential facts of nature, in all its crude rankness as well as its sublime qualities springs from his impression that "there is plenty of genial love of Nature, but not so much of Nature herself.