A policeman checking man's identification.
- Police is defined as members of law enforcement, or people vested with the power to make or enforce rules in a certain area or on a certain topic.
- The cops who gives you a speeding ticket or arrest murderers are an example of police.
- People who are judgmental about fashion and make fun of those who don't comply with the current styles are an example of the fashion police.
- Police means to enforce the rules, or to enforce law and order.
When you patrol an area to make sure that the laws are being followed, this is an example of when you police the area.
- Archaic the regulation within a community of morals, safety, sanitation, etc.; public order; law enforcement
- the governmental department (of a city, state, etc.) organized for keeping order, enforcing the law, and preventing, detecting, and prosecuting crimes
- a governmental force, or body of persons, established and maintained for keeping order, etc.
- a private organization like this: security police at a college
- the members of any such force
- Informal those who act as self-appointed guardians of morality, propriety, style, etc.: usually somewhat disparaging: the fashion police, the language police
- ⌂ U.S. Army
- the work or duty of keeping a camp, post, etc. clean and orderly
- the soldiers charged with such duty: kitchen police
Origin of policeFrench ; from Late Latin politia, administration of the commonwealth (in L, the state) ; from Classical Greek politeia, the state, citizenship ; from polit?s, citizen ; from polis, city ; from Indo-European an unverified form pel-, fortress (from source Sanskrit p?r, town), origin, originally , filled wall, special use of base an unverified form pel-, to flow, fill from source full
- to control, protect, or keep orderly with or as police or a similar force: to police the streets
- ⌂ to make or keep (a military camp, post, etc.) clean and orderly: often with up
- (used with a pl. verb)a. A body of government employees trained in methods of law enforcement and crime prevention and detection and authorized to maintain the peace, safety, and order of the community.b. A body of persons with a similar organization and function: campus police. Also called police force.
- Archaic Regulation and control of the affairs of a community, especially with respect to maintenance of order, law, health, morals, safety, and other matters affecting the public welfare.
- Informal A group that admonishes, cautions, or reminds: grammar police; fashion police.
- a. The cleaning of a military base or other military area: Police of the barracks must be completed before inspection.b. The soldiers assigned to a specified maintenance duty.
transitive verbpo·liced, po·lic·ing, po·lic·es
- To regulate, control, or keep in order with a law enforcement agency or other official group.
- To observe and issue warnings or correctives regarding: policing someone's grammar.
- To make (a military area, for example) neat in appearance: policed the barracks.
Origin of policeFrench, from Old French policie, civil organization, from Late Latin pol&imacron;t&imacron;a, from Latin, the State, from Greek pol&imacron;teia, from pol&imacron;t&emacron;s, citizen, from polis, city; see pel&schwa;-3 in Indo-European roots.
- A civil force granted the legal authority to enforce the law and maintain public order. [from 18th c.]
- Call the police!
- The police operating in New York City operate under the New York City Police Department, several other City agencies and boards, and several public authorities.
- (regional, chiefly US, Caribbean, Scotland) A police officer. [from 19th c.]
- (now rare, historical) The regulation of a given community or society; administration, law and order etc. [from 17th c.]
(third-person singular simple present polices, present participle policing, simple past and past participle policed)
- To enforce the law and keep order among (a group).
- Extra security was hired to police the crowd at the big game.
- To patrol an area.
From Middle French police, from Latin politia (“state, government"), from Ancient Greek Ï€Î¿Î»Î¹Ï„ÎµÎ¯Î± (politeia).