Declaration of war

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DECLARATION OF WAR. An act of the national legislature, in which a state of war is declared to exist between the United States and some other nation.
     2. This power is vested in congress by the constitution, art. 1, s. 8. There is no form or ceremony necessary, except the passage of the act. A manifesto, stating the causes of the war, is usually published, but war exists as soon as the act takes effect. It was formerly usual to precede hostilities by a public declaration communicated to the enemy, and to send a herald to demand satisfaction. Potter, Antiquities of Greece, b. 3, c. 7; Dig. 49, 15, 24. But that is not the practice of modern times. In some countries, as England, the, power of declaring war is vested in the king, but he has no power to raise men or money to carry it on, which renders the right almost nugatory.
     4. The public proclamation of the government of a state, by which it declares itself to be at war with a foreign power, which is named, and which forbids all and every one to aid or assist the common enemy, is also called a declaration of war.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
an authorization only to use military force." He reiterated this distinction when he went before the committee again in July, reminding the senators, "There's been no declaration of war."
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8, 1941, to respond to the attack of the Imperial Japanese Navy on the fleet at Pearl Harbor, the resulting declaration of war was on Japan alone, not Japan and Germany.
But the gems of the evening, which lured balletgoers from all over the world to the event, were apparently lost fragments from Leonide Massine's The Seventh Symphony, to the Beethoven music, and, most tantalizing of all, a solo and duet from Frederick Ashton's Devil's Holiday, a work scheduled to have had its world premiere in London in the aborted September 1939 Ballet Russe London season, cancelled by the declaration of war on September 3, and unseen since 1942.
Congress for a declaration of war. President Roosevelt then revised the typed draft marking it up and selecting alternative wordings that strengthened the tone of the speech.
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