• pandect
  • audio pronunciation
  • \PAN-dekt\
  • DEFINITION

noun

1
: a complete code of the laws of a country or system of law
2
: a treatise covering an entire subject
  • EXAMPLES

"Stability and support operations are not, within the pandect of modern conflict, considered war at all but 'military operations other than war,'…." — From an article by Tom Bissell in Harper’s Magazine, January 2006

"Through a cast of improbably named characters (Nutbeam, Diddy Shovel, Tert Card, among many) Proulx regales us with a pandect of Newfoundland lore." — From a book review by Sandra Scofield in the Washington Post Book World, August 1, 1993

  • DID YOU KNOW?

The original pandect was the "Pandectae," a massive fifty-volume digest of Roman civil law that was created under the emperor Justinian in the 6th century. The Latin word "pandectae" is the plural of "pandectes," which means "encyclopedic work" or "book that contains everything." "Pandectes" in turn derives from the Greek "pandekt‡s" ("all-receiving"), from "pan-" ("all") and "dechesthai" ("to receive"). When the word "pandect" first cropped up in English in the mid-16th century, it referred to the complete code of laws of a particular country or system. Its "comprehensive treatise" sense developed later that century.

Test Your Memory: What recent Word of the Day is both a synonym and a relative of "diversion"? The answer is ...

  • MORE WORDS OF THE DAY

Visit our archives to see previous selections ยป

  • FEATURED ITEM FROM OUR STORE
  • PODCAST

Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP

  • SUBSCRIBE

Subscribe to the Word of the Day e-mail

Manage Your Account