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From Latin mīlitia (army, military force/service), from mīles (soldier).

The use of "militia" rather than "police" to refer to the police force (of Ukraine and some other countries) originated in the USSR.



militia (plural militias or militiae)

  1. An army of trained civilians, which may be an official reserve army, called upon in time of need, the entire able-bodied population of a state which may also be called upon, or a private force not under government control.
  2. The national police force of certain countries (e.g. Ukraine).




From mīles (soldier).



mīlitia f (genitive mīlitiae); first declension

  1. military service
    • 27 BCE – 25 BCE, Titus Livius, Ab urbe condita libri 26.1
      huic generi militum senatus eundem, quem Cannensibus, finem statuerat militiae.
      For this class of soldier the senate had established a limit in duration to their military service, which was the same as the men at Cannae.
  2. the military, army, soldiery
  3. warfare, war, campaign
  4. civil service, profession, employment
  5. (figuratively) military spirit, courage, bravery


First declension.

Case Singular Plural
nominative mīlitia mīlitiae
genitive mīlitiae mīlitiārum
dative mīlitiae mīlitiīs
accusative mīlitiam mīlitiās
ablative mīlitiā mīlitiīs
vocative mīlitia mīlitiae

Related terms[edit]



  • militia in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • militia in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • militia in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition, 1883–1887)
  • militia in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire Illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • Carl Meissner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • to take service in the army: militiam (only in the sing.) capessere
    • to try to avoid military service: militiam detrectare, subterfugere
    • to be excused military duty: militiae vacationem habere
    • to retire from service: militia functum, perfunctum esse
  • militia in Ramminger, Johann (accessed 16 July 2016) Neulateinische Wortliste: Ein Wörterbuch des Lateinischen von Petrarca bis 1700[2], pre-publication website, 2005-2016