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From impress +‎ -ment.


  • IPA(key): /ɪmˈpɹɛsmənt/
  • Hyphenation: im‧press‧ment


impressment (countable and uncountable, plural impressments)

  1. The act of seizing for public use; impressing into public service.
    • 1808, Hansard, 3 February, 1808, [1]
      owing to the immense number of our sailors, and the extent of our commerce, we were enabled by impressment and other means, to fit out and man a powerful fleet in a few weeks
    • 1850, Charles Dickens, David Copperfield, Chapter V, [2]
      Although it was a warm day, she seemed to think of nothing but the fire. I fancied she was jealous even of the saucepan on it; and I have reason to know that she took its impressment into the service of boiling my egg and broiling my bacon, in dudgeon []
    • 1988, James McPherson, Battle Cry of Freedom, Oxford 2004, p. 833:
      A month later the governors of six more states, meeting in conference, enigmatically urged the impressment of slaves for “the public service as may be required.”
    • 2002, Colin Imber, The Ottoman Empire, 1300-1650: The Structure of Power, Palgrave Macmillan, Chapter 8, p. 294,
      [] in years when need was pressing, [] the government would order the construction of extra ships at specified points on the shores of the Black Sea and Mediterranean, and the impressment of craftsmen to do the work.