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English definition of “pecking order”

pecking order

noun [C usually singular] uk   us  
an informal social system in which some people or groups know they are more or less important than others: There's a clearly established pecking order in this office. He started as a clerk but gradually rose in the pecking order.Classifying and creating order
(Definition of pecking order from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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