Prisoner of war

  • an american soldier of the 12th armored division stands guard over a group of german prisoners, april 1945

    a prisoner of war (pow) is a non-combatant—whether a military member, an irregular military fighter, or a civilian—who is held captive by a belligerent power during or immediately after an armed conflict. the earliest recorded usage of the phrase "prisoner of war" dates back to 1610.[1]

    belligerents hold prisoners of war in custody for a range of legitimate and illegitimate reasons, such as isolating them from enemy combatants still in the field (releasing and repatriating them in an orderly manner after hostilities), demonstrating military victory, punishing them, prosecuting them for war crimes, exploiting them for their labour, recruiting or even conscripting them as their own combatants, collecting military and political intelligence from them, or indoctrinating them in new political or religious beliefs.[2]

  • ancient times
  • middle ages and renaissance
  • modern times
  • world war i
  • world war ii
  • post-world war ii
  • numbers of pows
  • in popular culture
  • see also
  • references
  • further reading
  • external links

An American soldier of the 12th Armored Division stands guard over a group of German prisoners, April 1945

A prisoner of war (POW) is a non-combatant—whether a military member, an irregular military fighter, or a civilian—who is held captive by a belligerent power during or immediately after an armed conflict. The earliest recorded usage of the phrase "prisoner of war" dates back to 1610.[1]

Belligerents hold prisoners of war in custody for a range of legitimate and illegitimate reasons, such as isolating them from enemy combatants still in the field (releasing and repatriating them in an orderly manner after hostilities), demonstrating military victory, punishing them, prosecuting them for war crimes, exploiting them for their labour, recruiting or even conscripting them as their own combatants, collecting military and political intelligence from them, or indoctrinating them in new political or religious beliefs.[2]

Other Languages
Ænglisc: Herenuma
العربية: أسير
Bân-lâm-gú: Hu-ló͘
беларуская: Ваеннапалонныя
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Ваеннапалонны
Чӑвашла: Тыткăн
dansk: Krigsfange
Diné bizaad: Yiisnááh
eesti: Sõjavang
Esperanto: Militkaptito
euskara: Gerra-preso
فارسی: اسیر
한국어: 포로
հայերեն: Ռազմագերիներ
Bahasa Indonesia: Tahanan perang
עברית: שבוי
lietuvių: Nelaisvė
magyar: Hadifogoly
Bahasa Melayu: Tawanan perang
Nederlands: Krijgsgevangene
日本語: 捕虜
norsk: Krigsfange
norsk nynorsk: Krigsfange
русский: Плен
shqip: Rob lufte
Simple English: Prisoner of war
slovenčina: Vojnový zajatec
slovenščina: Vojni ujetnik
српски / srpski: Ратни заробљеници
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Ratni zarobljenici
suomi: Sotavanki
татарча/tatarça: Әсир
Tiếng Việt: Tù binh
Zazaki: Tepışte
中文: 战俘