Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To engage (persons or a person) for service in the armed forces.
  • intransitive verb To engage the support or cooperation of.
  • intransitive verb To enter the armed forces.
  • intransitive verb To participate actively in a cause or enterprise.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To enter, as a name on a list; enroll; register.
  • To engage for public service, especially military or naval service, by enrolling after mutual agreement: as, to enlist men for the army.
  • To unite firmly to a cause; employ in advancing some interest; engage the services of: as, to enlist one's sympathies in the cause of charity.
  • Synonyms and Enroll, etc. See record, v.
  • To engage in public service, especially military service, by subscribing articles or enrolling one's name; specifically, to engage in such service voluntarily.
  • To enter heartily into a cause, with devotion to its interests.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • intransitive verb To enroll and bind one's self for military or naval service
  • intransitive verb To enter heartily into a cause, as if enrolled.
  • transitive verb To enter on a list; to enroll; to register.
  • transitive verb To engage for military or naval service, the name being entered on a list or register.
  • transitive verb To secure the support and aid of; to employ in advancing interest.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb intransitive To join a cause or organization, especially military service.
  • verb transitive To recruit the aid or membership of others.
  • verb To secure, to obtain.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb hire for work or assistance
  • verb engage somebody to enter the army
  • verb join the military

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

en- +‎ list

Examples

  • The eagerness to enlist is partly an extended expression of gratitude to the United States for liberating Guam from a brutal Japanese occupation during World War II.

    Wipeout

  • The eagerness to enlist is partly an extended expression of gratitude to the United States for liberating Guam from a brutal Japanese occupation during World War II.

    Wipeout

  • "In plain English, enlist in my company, my fine fellow, and your life and liberty are both safe."

    The Pilot

  • I think the reason you won’t enlist, is you would indeed be officer material, and promptly get fragged by your own men.

    Think Progress » Russert: A Source “Close to the President” Told Me Bush “Won’t Fire Rumsfeld Because It Would Be The Equivalent Of Firing Himself.”

  • As, of course, it will - if you choose to enlist, that is.

    Home/News

  • Desperate for answers and a quick solution to the problem, the Nazi commanders set aside from personal grudge long enough to "enlist" a Jewish scholar with intimate knowledge of the keep and its history to find out what it is that is killing them off and seemingly defying all rational modes of engagement.

    Rabid Reads: "The Keep" by F. Paul Wilson

  • When Polish forces were deployed to Europe the only way to take the bear with them was to "enlist" him.

    Boing Boing

  • In fact, the worst thing most of the protesters say repeatedly is "enlist," which I'm sure Sparling and other veterans there found particularly insulting, but which actually isn't.

    Hullabaloo

  • Also, Elirabett: JAG Officers don't "enlist"; they get a commission.

    Oh, why don't you just admit it?

  • Republicans and Democrats are always trying to "enlist" new recruits to help.

    Oh, are you in for it now! - BatesLine

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