The Military Police are frequently asked what is the meaning of "PROVOST"

The Middle English word provost is derived from the Old English word praefost and the Old French word provost.

These are both from Medieval Latin propositus, praepositus, which in turn is derived from the Latin praepositus "(one) placed before (others), from the past participle of praeponere, to place before or over .


In order to better understand this title, the Oxford Dictionary describes the term as follows:

"... One appointed to preside over or superintend something; the representative of the supreme power in a district or sphere of action = Ruler, chief, head, captain, etc - 1631.
An officer of the military police in a garrison or camp, or in the field: see net (In this sense usually pronounced provou) - 1692
An officer or official in charge of some establishment, undertaking, or body of men ...... An officer charged with the apprehension, custody and punishment of offenders - 1873.
.... comb. : p. cell, a cell for confining military prisoners; - sergeant, a sergeant of the military police