- posse comitatus.
- a body or force armed with legal authority.
- Slang. a group of friends or associates: hanging out with your posse; a posse of drug dealers.
Origin of posse
- in possibility; potentially (contrasted with in esse).
Examples from the Web for posse
Up till then I was just a dog-assed heavy, one of the posse.The Story Behind Lee Marvin’s Liberty Valance Smile
January 3, 2015
The crowd is an assortment of reporters, posse members, film students, and very skittish men sporting huge AOL headphones.James and the Giant Internet Company: Franco and AOL Get Kissy Faces
September 18, 2014
Before Escobar and his posse would surrender, the drug kingpin had a few stipulations.Pablo Escobar’s Private Prison Is Now Run by Monks for Senior Citizens
June 7, 2014
Teaming up with notorious Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the action hero is part of a ‘posse’ to protect schools in Phoenix.Steven Seagal Takes Down Bad Guys, Protects Kids
Terry Greene Sterling
February 8, 2013
He said some of the posse members will use their own marked cars, and others might use patrol cars if they're available.Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio to Send Armed Posses to Protect Schools
Terry Greene Sterling
January 9, 2013
He had felt it before, when he watched the posse retreat with the body of Bill Dozier.
Therefore, none of the posse would have a point-blank shot at him.
The bullets of the posse had neither torn a tendon nor broken a bone.
The posse would plunge ahead, and he could cut in toward Los Toros.
Mali-ya-bwana and Simba set out with a posse of M'tela's men.The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
- Also called: posse comitatus US the able-bodied men of a district assembled together and forming a group upon whom the sheriff may call for assistance in maintaining law and order
- law possibility (esp in the phrase in posse)
- slang a Jamaican street gang in the US
- informal a group of friends or associates
- possible; potentialCompare in esse
Word Origin and History for posse
1640s (in Anglo-Latin from early 14c.), shortening of posse comitatus "the force of the county" (1620s, in Anglo-Latin from late 13c.), from Medieval Latin posse "body of men, power," from Latin posse "have power, be able" (see potent) + comitatus "of the county," genitive of Late Latin word for "court palace" (see comitatus). Modern slang meaning "small gang" is probably from Western movies.