armed forces

plural noun

Definition of armed forces

: the combined military, naval, and air forces of a nation

called also armed services

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for armed forces


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of armed forces in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This week, a spokesman for South Korea’s Defense Ministry said the armed forces feel immense responsibility for not sufficiently protecting victims. Andrew Jeong, WSJ, 3 June 2021 The armed forces drop their unfunded priorities list every fiscal year as supplements to the main defense budget. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 3 June 2021 The armed forces have released a stream of videos this year showing soldiers, objects and locations after dark outlined in a glowing white light. Washington Post, 24 May 2021 Observers expressed alarm that Tuesday's attack took place in an area where international and regional armed forces are actively trying to stop jihadist violence. Sam Mednick, Star Tribune, 19 May 2021 Under López Obrador, a leftist leader and longtime critic of a U.S.-financed war on drugs, Mexico’s armed forces have taken on increasingly more responsibilities in the country. Wendy Fry, San Diego Union-Tribune, 7 May 2021 Recent activities are demonstrative of how Britain’s armed forces continue to make an active and valuable contribution to the U.S.-led multinational campaign against the Islamic State (ISIS) group. Paul Iddon, Forbes, 6 May 2021 As armed forces stealthily invade, the internet and the electrical grid go haywire, snarling traffic and cutting off communication. Noel Murray, Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2021 All of Biden’s initial political success in office could be upended by a new coronavirus variant, a major crisis on the southern border, or a Taliban takeover of Kabul as soon as the last American armed forces leave Afghanistan. Walter Shapiro, The New Republic, 29 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'armed forces.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of armed forces

1625, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About armed forces

Time Traveler for armed forces

Time Traveler

The first known use of armed forces was in 1625

See more words from the same year

Statistics for armed forces

Last Updated

10 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Armed forces.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for armed forces

armed forces


English Language Learners Definition of armed forces

: the military organizations (such as the army, navy, and air force) of a country

armed forces

noun plural

Kids Definition of armed forces

: the military, naval, and air forces of a nation

More from Merriam-Webster on armed forces

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for armed forces

Nglish: Translation of armed forces for Spanish Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Return of Name that Color!

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!