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Meaning of press gang

press' gang"

Pronunciation: [key]
  1. a body of persons under the command of an officer, formerly employed to impress others for service, esp. in the navy or army.

press-gang

Pronunciation: (pres'gang"), [key]
— v.t.
  1. to force (a person) into military or naval service.
  2. to coerce (a person) into taking a certain action, political stand, etc.: to be press-ganged into endorsing a candidate.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.