Pronunciation: (kûr'nl), [key]
1. an officer in the U.S. Army, Air Force, or Marine Corps ranking between lieutenant colonel and brigadier general: corresponding to a captain in the U.S. Navy.
2. a commissioned officer of similar rank in the armed forces of some other nations.
3. an honorary title bestowed by some Southern states, as to those who have brought honor to the state, prominent businesspersons, visiting celebrities, or the like: When the vice president visited the state he was made a Kentucky colonel.
4. Older Use.(in the South) a title of respect prefixed to the name of distinguished elderly men.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.