Letters of marque
Marque Marque, n. [F. marque, in lettre de marque letter of marque, a commission with which the commandant of every armed vessel was obliged to be provided, under penalty of being considered a pirate or corsair; marque here prob. meaning, border, boundary (the letter of marque being a permission to go beyond the border), and of German origin. See {March} border.] (Law) A license to pass the limits of a jurisdiction, or boundary of a country, for the purpose of making reprisals. [1913 Webster]

{Letters of marque}, {Letters of marque and reprisal}, a license or extraordinary commission granted by a government to a private person to fit out a privateer or armed ship to cruise at sea and make prize of the enemy's ships and merchandise. The ship so commissioned is sometimes called a letter of marque. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • letters of marque — n. a former government document authorizing an individual to make reprisals on the subjects of an enemy nation, specif. to arm a ship and capture enemy merchant ships and cargo: also letters (or letter) of marque and reprisal * * * …   Universalium

  • letters of marque — n. a former government document authorizing an individual to make reprisals on the subjects of an enemy nation, specif. to arm a ship and capture enemy merchant ships and cargo: also letters (or letter) of marque and reprisal …   English World dictionary

  • letters of marque — noun a license to a private citizen to seize property of another nation • Syn: ↑letter of marque, ↑letter of mark and reprisal • Hypernyms: ↑license, ↑licence, ↑permit * * * also …   Useful english dictionary

  • letters-of-marque — letter of marqueˈ or letters of marqueˈ A privateer s licence to commit acts of hostility • • • Main Entry: ↑marque …   Useful english dictionary

  • letters of marque — Synonyms and related words: Pastoral Epistle, aerogram, air letter, air piracy, airgraph, airplane hijacking, billet doux, buccaneering, bull, chain letter, dead letter, dimissorial, dimissory letter, drop letter, encyclical, fan letter, form… …   Moby Thesaurus

  • letters of marque — Date: 15th century written authority granted to a private person by a government to seize the subjects of a foreign state or their goods; specifically a license granted to a private person to fit out an armed ship to plunder the enemy …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Letters of marque and reprisal — Marque Marque, n. [F. marque, in lettre de marque letter of marque, a commission with which the commandant of every armed vessel was obliged to be provided, under penalty of being considered a pirate or corsair; marque here prob. meaning, border …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • letters of marque and reprisal — /letsrz av mark and raprayzal/ These words, marque and reprisal, are frequently used as synonymous, but, taken in their strict etymological sense, the latter signifies a taking in return; the former, the passing the frontiers (marches) in order… …   Black's law dictionary

  • letters of marque and reprisal — /letsrz av mark and raprayzal/ These words, marque and reprisal, are frequently used as synonymous, but, taken in their strict etymological sense, the latter signifies a taking in return; the former, the passing the frontiers (marches) in order… …   Black's law dictionary

  • letters of marque and reprisal — see letters of marque * * * letters of marque or letters of marque and reprisal, an official document giving a person permission from a government to capture the merchant ships of an enemy; marque …   Useful english dictionary

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