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police state

a nation in which the police, especially a secret police, summarily suppresses any social, economic, or political act that conflicts with governmental policy.
Origin of police state
First recorded in 1860-65 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for police state
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Since this is a police state the only way to get them out is through violence.

    Revolution Dallas McCord Reynolds
  • During the time of readjustment after Joseph Stalin's death in 1953, Bulgaria's police state period gradually came to a close.

    Area Handbook for Bulgaria

    Eugene K. Keefe, Violeta D. Baluyut, William Giloane, Anne K. Long, James M. Moore, and Neda A. Walpole
  • He had been prepared for a police state, tight security controls, a repressed populace, and a growing air of unrest.

    The Status Civilization Robert Sheckley
  • For a closed society is not open to ideas of progress--and a police state finds that it cannot command the grain to grow.

  • Having experienced what the police state meant, he would have been untrue to himself if he had yielded to it.

    Security Poul William Anderson
British Dictionary definitions for police state

police state

a state or country in which a repressive government maintains control through the police
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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police state in Culture

police state definition

A nation whose rulers maintain order and obedience by the threat of police or military force; one with a brutal, arbitrary government.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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