Definition of Government by Merriam-Webster

gov·​ern·​ment | ˈgə-vər(n)-mənt How to pronounce government (audio) , -və-mənt; ˈgə-bᵊm-ənt, -vᵊm-

1 : the body of persons that constitutes the governing authority of a political unit or organization: such as

a : the officials comprising the governing body of a political unit and constituting the organization as an active agency

The government was slow to react to the crisis.

b capitalized : the executive branch of the U.S. federal government

c capitalized : a small group of persons holding simultaneously the principal political executive offices of a nation or other political unit and being responsible for the direction and supervision of public affairs:

(2) : such a group in a parliamentary system constituted by the cabinet or by the ministry

2a : the organization, machinery, or agency through which a political unit exercises authority and performs functions and which is usually classified according to the distribution of power within it

She works for the federal government.

b : the complex of political institutions, laws, and customs through which the function of governing is carried out

3 : the act or process of governing specifically : authoritative direction or control

4 : the continuous exercise of authority over and the performance of functions for a political unit : rule

6a : the office, authority, or function of governing

b obsolete : the term during which a governing official holds office

7 obsolete : moral conduct or behavior : discretion

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