: a detachment of men under command of an officer empowered to force men into military or naval service
press-gang transitive verb

Examples of press-gang in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web When Captain Kidd dispatched a press-gang to find new recruits for the Wager, six members of the gang itself deserted. David Grann, The New Yorker, 28 Feb. 2023 Some are just folks off the street who get kidnapped or press-ganged into service in the navy. Sean Woods, Rolling Stone, 16 Apr. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'press-gang.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


press entry 4

First Known Use

1693, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of press-gang was in 1693

Dictionary Entries Near press-gang

Cite this Entry

“Press-gang.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jun. 2024.

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