During World War I, U.S. soldiers took to referring to heavy German artillery shells as "G.I. cans". During the same war, "G.I.", reinterpreted as "government issue" or "general issue", began being used used to refer to any item associated with the U.S. Army (e.g. "G.I. soap"). Other reinterpretations of "G.I." include "garrison issue" and "general infantry".
The earliest known recorded instances of "G.I." being used to refer to an American enlisted man as a slang term are from 1935. In the form of "G.I. Joe" it was made better known due to it being taken as the title of a comic strip by Dave Breger in Yank, the Army Weekly, beginning in 1942.
In British military parlance and in armed forces modelled on British military traditions, G.I. refers to a Gunnery Instructor, generally an NCO responsible for inducting and training recruits.
- Digger (soldier) – A similar term used in Australia
- Dogface (military)
- Folk etymology
- G.I. Bill
- G.I. Blues (film)
- G.I. Generation
- G.I. Jane (film)
- G.I. Jill – disk jockey for the World War II program G.I Jive
- G.I. Joe (pigeon) – a pigeon who served in World War II
- G.I. Joe (disambiguation)
- G-Man (slang)
- Mehmetçik (soldier) – Turkish slang for a common soldier
- The Story of G.I. Joe (1945 film)
- Tommy Atkins (soldier) – British slang for a common soldier
- "G.I. Definition from CollinsDictionary.com". Collins Dictionary. HarperCollins Publishers Ltd and Penguin Random House LLC. 2019. Retrieved 11 November 2023.
- Wilton, Dave (2 February 2009). "G.I. – Wordorigins.org". Word Origins. Wordorigins.org. Retrieved 11 November 2023.
- Rawson, Hugh (April–May 2006). "Why do we say "G.I."?". American Heritage.
[[Category:United States Army personnel of World War II]