Meaning of militia in English:


Pronunciation /mɪˈlɪʃə/

Translate militia into Spanish


  • 1A military force that is raised from the civil population to supplement a regular army in an emergency.

    ‘creating a militia was no answer to the army's manpower problem’
    • ‘small detachments of militia’
    • ‘Military forces - and this included the various state militias - were raised to defend the country against England, France, and Spain.’
    • ‘By the 1808 Treaty of Paris the Prussian army was restricted to a mere 42,000 men and forbidden to raise a militia.’
    • ‘During the Revolutionary War, state governments assumed the colonies' authority to raise their short-term militias through drafts if necessary.’
    • ‘In England the French rather than the German threat gave rise to the Volunteer Force, which supplemented the regular army and militia.’
    • ‘The militia was a part-time force charged with a wide range of duties and organized at the village level, but supervised from higher echelons.’
    • ‘He plans to double the number of the security forces, and create a million-man militia.’
    • ‘Until the national army becomes operationally effective, parts of the regional militias will have to be maintained as local security forces under strict control of the central government.’
    • ‘The due process clause permits military justice but restricts its application to the armed forces or to the militia during times of war.’
    • ‘Under the Constitution of 1787, military training was divided, as were the nation's military institutions, between the state militias and the regular army.’
    • ‘During this period, all states and territories required men who wanted to avoid military service in the militias to pay fees or to hire substitutes.’
    • ‘During the Revolutionary War, the civilian militias were, again contrary to myth, ineffective on the whole as a fighting force.’
    • ‘The army is already building up civilian militias close to the gas field.’
    • ‘The president was to be commander-in-chief of the military and the state militias when brought into federal service.’
    • ‘The older men were discharged from service in the militia as not fully reliable.’
    • ‘These mindful bureaucrats limited payments to state militias that had been directly mustered into federal service or those that had been called out with authorization.’
    armed forces, army, forces, services, militia, soldiery
    1. 1.1A military force that engages in rebel or terrorist activities in opposition to a regular army.
      ‘After weeks of dreadful anticipation, a rebel militia advances against government forces.’
      • ‘The size of the military forces of the opposing militias has been subject to exaggeration.’
      • ‘It is this dynamic that the intelligent field commander of a local militia or opposition group exploits.’
      • ‘There are another 6,200 UN peacekeepers on the way, who will supervise disarming of the rebels and pro-government militias.’
      • ‘In the past, the problem of the opposition militias was taken care of by creating a well paid and trained armed force to deal with armed opposition.’
      • ‘Most of the children escaped, although it is reported that some of the older ones were forcibly recruited into the rebel militia.’
      • ‘He was forced to become a child soldier and fight in a rebel militia.’
      • ‘About 15 000 children were drafted to fight in the pro-government militias and rebel groups, the UN has estimated.’
      • ‘Using brutal tactics he created a rural militia to intimidate the population.’
      • ‘Surviving civil wars and brutal militias in several African countries, they arrive in Algeria and then must walk across the desert to Morocco.’
      • ‘A legitimate government will encourage the regional forces to dissolve their militias in the interest of creating a national army.’
      • ‘Since such a war is more destructive to the civilian population than to the combatants, the militias have little incentive to opt for a peace that does not favor their corporate agenda.’
      • ‘Disarmament of local militias is also progressing well.’
      • ‘Replacing militias, guerilla groups and other armed bands, the new army is developing according to plan.’
      • ‘Other militias would emerge that no one has ever heard of today.’
      • ‘No one works alone anymore - they've created gangs and armed militias.’
      • ‘Opposition forces may have had militias during the civil war but it is not civil war they want today.’
      armed force, force, military detachment, military unit, unit, platoon, brigade, regiment, squadron, battalion, company, legion, corps
    2. 1.2mainly historical (in the US) all able-bodied citizens eligible by law to be called on to provide military service supplementary to the regular armed forces.


Late 16th century (in sense ‘system of military discipline and tactics’): from Latin, literally ‘military service’, from miles, milit- ‘soldier’.