Other Word Forms of Honcho
Origin of Honcho
From Japanese 班長 (はんちょう, hanchō, “squad leader”), from 19th c. Mandarin bānzhǎng 班長 "team leader". Probably entered English during World War II: many apocryphal stories describe American soldiers hearing Japanese prisoners-of-war refer to their lieutenants as "hanchō".
Japanese hanchō squad leader han squad (from Middle Chinese paːn division, class) (also the source of Mandarin bān) chō chief (from Middle Chinese triaŋ´) (also the source of Mandarin zhǎng)
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
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