Meaning of LAW in English


law 1

— lawlike , adj.

/law/ , n.

1. the principles and regulations established in a community by some authority and applicable to its people, whether in the form of legislation or of custom and policies recognized and enforced by judicial decision.

2. any written or positive rule or collection of rules prescribed under the authority of the state or nation, as by the people in its constitution. Cf. bylaw, statute law .

3. the controlling influence of such rules; the condition of society brought about by their observance: maintaining law and order.

4. a system or collection of such rules.

5. the department of knowledge concerned with these rules; jurisprudence: to study law.

6. the body of such rules concerned with a particular subject or derived from a particular source: commercial law.

7. an act of the supreme legislative body of a state or nation, as distinguished from the constitution.

8. the principles applied in the courts of common law, as distinguished from equity.

9. the profession that deals with law and legal procedure: to practice law.

10. legal action; litigation: to go to law.

11. a person, group, or agency acting officially to enforce the law: The law arrived at the scene soon after the alarm went off.

12. any rule or injunction that must be obeyed: Having a nourishing breakfast was an absolute law in our household.

13. a rule or principle of proper conduct sanctioned by conscience, concepts of natural justice, or the will of a deity: a moral law.

14. a rule or manner of behavior that is instinctive or spontaneous: the law of self-preservation.

15. (in philosophy, science, etc.)

a. a statement of a relation or sequence of phenomena invariable under the same conditions.

b. a mathematical rule.

16. a principle based on the predictable consequences of an act, condition, etc.: the law of supply and demand.

17. a rule, principle, or convention regarded as governing the structure or the relationship of an element in the structure of something, as of a language or work of art: the laws of playwriting; the laws of grammar.

18. a commandment or a revelation from God.

19. ( sometimes cap. ) a divinely appointed order or system.

20. the Law . See Law of Moses .

21. the preceptive part of the Bible, esp. of the New Testament, in contradistinction to its promises: the law of Christ.

22. Brit. Sports. an allowance of time or distance given a quarry or competitor in a race, as the head start given a fox before the hounds are set after it.

23. be a law to or unto oneself , to follow one's own inclinations, rules of behavior, etc.; act independently or unconventionally, esp. without regard for established mores.

24. lay down the law ,

a. to state one's views authoritatively.

b. to give a command in an imperious manner: The manager laid down the law to the workers.

25. take the law into one's own hands , to administer justice as one sees fit without recourse to the usual law enforcement or legal processes: The townspeople took the law into their own hands before the sheriff took action.


26. Chiefly Dial. to sue or prosecute.

27. Brit. (formerly) to expeditate (an animal).

[ bef. 1000; ME law ( e ), lagh ( e ), OE lagu lagu, early pl. of lag layer, stratum, a laying in order, fixed tune, (in collective sense) law; akin to LAY 1 , LIE 2 ]

law 2

/law/ , adj., adv., n. Obs.

low 1 .

law 3

/law/ , v.i., v.t., n. Obs.

low 2 .

law 4

/law/ , interj. Older Use.

(used as an exclamation expressing astonishment.)

[ 1580-90; form of LORD ]

Random House Webster's Unabridged English dictionary.      Полный английский словарь Вебстер - Random House .