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Related to conscripted: compulsorily, adage, World War 2


compulsory enrollment of personnel for service in the armed forces. Obligatory service in the armed forces has existed since ancient times in many cultures, including the samuraisamurai
, knights of feudal Japan, retainers of the daimyo. This aristocratic warrior class arose during the 12th-century wars between the Taira and Minamoto clans and was consolidated in the Tokugawa period.
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 in Japan, warriors in the Aztec Empire, citizen militiamen in ancient Greece and Rome, and aristocrats and their peasants or yeomen during the Middle Ages in Europe. In England, compulsory military service was employed on the local level in the Anglo-Saxon fyrd as early as the 9th cent. In the 16th cent. MachiavelliMachiavelli, Niccolò
, 1469–1527, Italian author and statesman, one of the outstanding figures of the Renaissance, b. Florence. Life

A member of the impoverished branch of a distinguished family, he entered (1498) the political service of the
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 argued that every able-bodied man in a nation was a potential soldier and could by means of conscription be required to serve in the armed forces. Conscription in the modern sense of the term dates from 1793, when the Convention of the French Republic raised an army of 300,000 men from the provinces. A few years later, conscription enabled Napoleon INapoleon I
, 1769–1821, emperor of the French, b. Ajaccio, Corsica, known as "the Little Corporal." Early Life

The son of Carlo and Letizia Bonaparte (or Buonaparte; see under Bonaparte, family), young Napoleon was sent (1779) to French military schools at
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 to build his tremendous fighting forces. Following Napoleon's example, Muhammad Ali of Egypt raised a powerful army in the 1830s. Compulsory peacetime recruitment was introduced (1811–12) by Prussia. Mass armies, raised at little cost by conscription, completely changed the scale of battle by the time of the Napoleonic Wars. The institution of conscription, which was increasingly justified by statesmen on grounds of national defense and economic stimulation, spread to other European nations and Japan in the 19th cent. At the outbreak of World War I, Great Britain adopted conscription and used it again in World War II; it was abolished in 1962. Though little used in the United States prior to the Civil War, conscription was used by both sides in that war and in most large-scale U.S. wars since, often with great controversy. Most of the important military powers of the 20th cent. have used conscription to raise their armed forces. China, because of its large population, has a policy of selective conscription. Impressmentimpressment,
forcible enrollment of recruits for military duty. Before the establishment of conscription, many countries supplemented their militia and mercenary troops by impressment.
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 is the forcible mustering of recruits. It lacks the scope and bureaucratic form of conscription. Many countries throughout the world, such as Israel, have mandatory military service; a few allow for alternate civilian service or release for conscientious objectorsconscientious objector,
person who, on the grounds of conscience, resists the authority of the state to compel military service. Such resistance, emerging in time of war, may be based on membership in a pacifistic religious sect, such as the Society of Friends (Quakers), the
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. See also selective serviceselective service,
in U.S. history, term for conscription.

Conscription was established (1863) in the U.S. Civil War, but proved unpopular (see draft riots). The law authorized release from service to anyone who furnished a substitute and, at first, to those who paid $300.
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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.


Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a method of troop recruitment based on universal military service. This system was in force in France in the late 18th century and the 19th.

During the French Revolution the Convention decreed in August 1793 the compulsory mass levy into the army of all Frenchmen between the ages of 18 and 40, the first places to be filled by bachelors and childless men between the ages of 18 and 25. In 1798 a universal six-year military obligation became the law in France under the name of conscription. Originally military service was considered an inescapable personal responsibility, and no one could take anyone else’s place. But by 1800 provisions were made to make the system less strict so that replacements could serve for the conscripts and exemptions could be bought. Military service thus became obligatory but not personal. Conscription was in effect in France until 1872 and in Russia (only for residents of Poland) from 1815 to 1874. In the second half of the 19th century conscription was replaced by universal military service.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Those selected for service in the pits were drawn by lot in Mr Bevin's office from the names of those conscripted on a regular basis.
The father of a village family of eight, friendly with his local camp's CO, 'rid' himself of an autistic son, who was conscripted only to refuse to shower, change his underwear and uniform and obey orders.
By mid-1943 it was facing a massive shortfall and coal production slumped to dangerously low levels, prompting Bevin to put a proportion of conscripted men into the mines instead of the armed services.
Labour's Gordon Banks (Ochil and Perthshire S) said today that the conscripted miners had served Britain well with "their toil, sweat and their life".
Of the 27 EU member states only six still retain mandatory military service: men only are conscripted in Austria for 6 to 12 months; Cyprus, 24 months; Denmark, 4 to12 months; Estonia, 8 to 11 months; Finland, 6 to12 months and Greece, 9 months as of 2009 while developing a professional force, despite earlier promises that the draft would be reduced to six months.
Members of the Turkish Cypriot community are not conscripted, although foreign nationals who acquire Cypriot citizenship are expected to serve their newly adopted country for a period of 14 months 'only'.
However, she implied that all soldiers inWW2were conscripted. This was definitely not the case.
Two South Korean women conscripted as forced workers in a Japanese factory during World War II received 18 yen each in pension money Tuesday, the local office of the Social Insurance Agency said.
Japan ruled the Korean Peninsula from 1910 to 1945, during which time it conscripted an estimated 1.2 million Koreans to offset Japan's labor shortage.
In the past, Muslims were not called up but this would no longer be the case as they would join Maronites and Armenians who were conscripted a few years ago.
Commenting on the observed levels of newly conscripted soldiers choosing to pursue the path of deferral, Kareklas said that "levels appear to be at the same level as last year."