Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Encyclopedia.

REPRISALS, war. The forcibly taking a thing by one nation which belonged to another, in return or satisfaction for a injury committed by the latter on the former. Vatt. B., 2, ch. 18, s. 342; 1 Bl. Com. ch. 7.
     2. Reprisals are used between nation and nation to do themselves justice, when they cannot otherwise obtain it. Congress have the power to grant letters of marque (q.v.) and reprisal. Const. art. 1, s. 8 cl. 11.
     3. Reprisals are made in two ways either by embargo, in which case the act is that of the state; or, by letters of marque and reprisals, in which case the act is that of the citizen, authorized by the government. Vide 2 Bro. Civ. Law, 334.
     4. Reprisals are divided into negative, when a nation refuses to fulfill a perfect obligation, which it has contracted, or to permit another state to enjoy a right which it justly claims; or positive, when they consist in seizing the persons and effects belonging to the other nation, in order to obtain satisfaction.
     5. They are also general or special. They are general when a state which has received, or supposes it has received an injury from another nation delivers commissions to its officers and subjects to take the persons and property belonging to the other nation, in retaliation for such acts, wherever they may be found. It usually amounts to a declaration of war. Special reprisals are such as are granted in times of peace, to particular individuals who have suffered an injury from the citizens or subjects of the other nation. Bynker. Quaest. Jur. Pub. lib. 1, Duponce, au's Translation, p. 182, note; Dall. Diet. Prises maritimes, axt. 2, Sec. 5.
     6. The property seized in making reprisals is preserved, while there is any hope of obtaining satisfaction or justice, as soon as that hope disappears, it is confiscated, and then the reprisal is complete. Vattel, B. 2, c. 18, Sec. 342.

References in periodicals archive ?
Marks had indeed been the target of prohibited reprisals by the Tribe.
Some of the bodies were mutilated and burnt by the assailants," he said, adding that the killings sparked reprisal attacks in the town by the mostly Muslim Seleka ex-rebel force.
It cannot be right that those who are empowered to deal with the situation, albeit on an imperfect and incomplete legal basis, should be inhibited from carrying through their powers by fear of reprisals.
Section 1587, prohibiting reprisal against employees of nonappropriated fund instrumentalities: reprisals for whistleblowing.
KADUNA (TAP) - A suicide car bomber rammed into a church in Nigeria's northern city of Kaduna Sunday, killing at least seven people and triggering reprisal attacks that killed another three.
He admits and deplores the connivance in reprisals of many politicians and administrators, but fails to acknowledge that most reprisals had a logical basis, even if misconceived.
Addressing the panel discussion on "intimidation or reprisals against individuals and groups who co-operate with the UN, its representatives and mechanisms in the field of human rights" held in Geneva on the sidelines of the 21st session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), Qatar's second secretary of the Permanent Mission of the State of Qatar to the UN, Al Muhanad al-Hammadi, said that human rights defenders needed protection provided by the UN and the international community, and that everyone had the right to legitimately protest violations of their human rights.
While the UN body rules in his favour, the man faces grave reprisals for speaking out in defence of his rights.
Nigeria: Attacks on churches in northern Nigeria "are not a small episode, but a systematic extermination" of Christians, although reprisals must also be condemned, Italy s International Cooperation minister said Monday.
Most reprisals will not be through formal peer review but apparent from attitude of nursing personnel, the scuttlebutt, or an increase in complaints about you.
Tawargha, a town about 250 km east of Tripoli, was ransacked and looted, and its residents forced to flee in one of the worst cases of reprisals against Gadhafi loyalists since the Libyan leader was overthrown three months ago.
War crimes have been committed by both sides of the Libyan war and the country risks descending into a bloody cycle of attacks and reprisals unless order can be established, according to human rights group Amnesty International.