Definition of Law by Merriam-Webster

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Definition of Law by Merriam-Webster

ˈlȯ How to pronounce law (audio)

1a(1) : a binding custom or practice of a community : a rule of conduct or action prescribed (see prescribe sense 1a) or formally recognized as binding or enforced by a controlling authority

(2) : the whole body of such customs, practices, or rules

The courts exist to uphold, interpret, and apply the law.

b(1) : the control brought about by the existence or enforcement of such law

preserved law and order in the town

(2) : the action of laws considered as a means of redressing wrongs also : litigation developed the habit of going to law over the slightest provocation — H. A. Overstreet

(3) : the agency of or an agent of established law

When he saw that the fighting was escalating, he called in the law.

c : a rule or order that it is advisable or obligatory to observe

a law of self-preservation

d : something compatible with or enforceable by established law

The decrees were judged not to be law and were therefore rescinded.

2a often capitalized : the revelation of the will of God set forth in the Old Testament

3 : a rule of construction or procedure

the laws of poetry

4 : the whole body of laws relating to one subject

criminal law probate law

5a : the legal profession

studied for a career in law

c : legal knowledge

a man with much history but little law

6a : a statement of an order or relation of phenomena that so far as is known is invariable under the given conditions

a law of thermodynamics Boyle’s law

b : a general relation proved or assumed to hold between mathematical or logical expressions

at law

: under or within the provisions of the law

enforceable at law

ˈlȯ How to pronounce Law (audio)

(Andrew) Bon*ar ˈbä-​nər How to pronounce Law (audio) 1858–1923 British (Canadian-born) statesman

Edward 1750–1818 1st Baron Ellenborough ˈe-​lən-​ˌbər-​ə How to pronounce Law (audio) , -​ˌbə-​rə , -​brə
English jurist

John 1671–1729 Scottish financier and speculator

William 1686–1761 English writer

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