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"Melee" as a term in military tactics refers to the close combat between units ("close" as in closer than optimal for the involved units' weapons, not necessarily hand-to-hand combat); it was originally borrowed from French mêlée in the context of Early Modern warfare.
- Michele Byam (2010-11-30). Arms and Armor, Discover the story of weapons and armor-from Stone Age axes to the battledress of samurai warriors. New York: Dorling Kindersley.