conscription

[kuh n-skrip-shuh n]
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noun
  1. compulsory enrollment of persons for military or naval service; draft.
  2. a compulsory contribution of money to a government during a time of war.

Origin of conscription

1350–1400 for earlier sense “piece of writing”; 1795–1805 for current senses; Middle English conscripcioun < Latin conscrīptiōn- (stem of conscrīptiō) a drawing up in writing, levying of troops, equivalent to conscrīpt(us) (see conscript) + -iōn- -ion
Related formscon·scrip·tion·al, adjectivean·ti·con·scrip·tion, nounnon·con·scrip·tion, nounpro·con·scrip·tion, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for conscription

enrollment, induction

Examples from the Web for conscription

Contemporary Examples of conscription

Historical Examples of conscription


British Dictionary definitions for conscription

conscription

noun
  1. compulsory military service
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

Word Origin and History for conscription
n.

late 14c., "a putting in writing," from Middle French conscription, from Latin conscriptionem (nominative conscriptio) "a drawing up of a list, enrollment, a levying of soldiers," from conscribere "to enroll," from com- "with" (see com-) + scribere "to write" (see script (n.)).

Meaning "enlistment of soldiers" is from 1520s; the sense "compulsory enlistment for military service" (1800) is traceable to the French Republic act of Sept. 5, 1798. Technically, a conscription is the enrollment of a fixed number by lot, with options of providing a substitute.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper