1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Corps
CORPS (pronounced as in French, from which it is taken, being a late spelling of cors, from Lat. corpus, a body; cf. “corpse”), a word in very general use since the 17th century to denote a body of troops, varying from a few hundred to the greater part of an army. In a special sense “corps” is used as synonymous with “army corps” (corps d’armée). The word is applied to any organized body, as in corps diplomatique, the general body of foreign diplomatic agents accredited to any government (see Diplomacy), or corps de ballet, the members of a troop of dancers at a theatre; so in esprit de corps, the common spirit of loyalty which animates any body of associated persons.