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Armed neutrality

military preparedness without commitment, especially as the expressed policy of a neutral nation in wartime; readiness to counter with force an invasion of rights by any belligerent power.
Historical Examples

It was again restored on the dissolution of the armed neutrality.
The Every Day Book of History and Chronology Joel Munsell

After that, there was a sort of armed neutrality between them.
The Brand of Silence Harrington Strong

The “armed neutrality” between Pauline and herself still continued.
Love Works Wonders Charlotte M. Brame

This plan is a sort of armed neutrality which has many advocates.
The Life Of Thomas Paine, Vol. I. (of II) Moncure Daniel Conway

If she had had more moderation and justice, the project of an armed neutrality would not have taken place.
The Diplomatic Correspondence of the American Revolution, Vol. V (of 12) Various

This was especially emphasized by the armed neutrality of 1780.
International Law George Grafton Wilson and George Fox Tucker

Her mother was torn with the torment of an armed neutrality.
St. Cuthbert’s Robert E. Knowles

As usual, it was about Effie, for on most other subjects they preserved an armed neutrality.
Beatrice H. Rider Haggard

My father and I were always on the most distant terms when I was a boy—a sort of armed neutrality so to speak.
The Curious Republic of Gondour and Other Whimsical Sketches Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)

Proceedings of Congress in reference to the armed neutrality.
The Diplomatic Correspondence of the American Revolution Various


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  • Armed to the teeth

    Overly well equipped or prepared, as in With her elaborate gown and makeup, she was armed to the teeth for her first New York appearance. The expression to the teeth meant “well equipped” in the 14th century, when knights often wore head-to-foot armor. The idiom, however, only gained currency in the mid-1800s, at first still […]

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