Friday, October 10, 2008

Word of the Day

Posse\PAH-see\n. 1: a large group often with a common interest 2: a body of persons summoned by a sheriff to assist in preserving the public peace usually in an emergency 3: a group of people temporarily organized to make a search (as for a lost child) 4: one's attendants or associates

Example Sentence: "On the Saturday morning we used to watch anxiously for the usual signs of activity and when we saw a large barrel of beer being escorted up the streets by a posse of small boys, we knew that all was well."

Did you know? "Posse" started out as a technical term in law, part of the term "posse comitatus," which in Medieval Latin meant "power or authority of the county." As such, it referred to a group of citizens summoned by a sheriff to preserve the public peace as allowed for by law. "Preserving the public peace" so often meant hunting down a supposed criminal that "posse" eventually came to mean any group organized to make a search or embark on a mission. In even broader use it can refer to any group, period. Sometimes nowadays that group is a gang or a rock band but it can as easily be any group - of politicians, models, architects, tourists, children, or what have you - acting in concert.

My use: With 9 kids and 3 moms, we were quite a posse at the zoo!

I like to hurry my little posse through Wal-Mart as quickly as possible.

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