by·​law | \ ˈbī-ˌlȯ How to pronounce bylaw (audio) \
variants: or less commonly byelaw

Definition of bylaw

1 : a rule adopted by an organization chiefly for the government of its members and the regulation of its affairs
2 : a local ordinance

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Examples of bylaw in a Sentence

the club's bylaws bar any member whose annual dues remain unpaid from voting in the election
Recent Examples on the Web HOAs are governed by bylaws, which establish how the association will be run, and by a declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions. Leah Napoliello, Houston Chronicle, "BBB on Homes: What is the role of a homeowners association?," 15 Feb. 2020 Oh, and Jughead challenges Brett to a duel at the episode’s end, as is mandated by the Quill & Skull bylaws, or some such. Jessica Macleish, Teen Vogue, "Jughead Sure Has Been Lying to Betty a Lot on "Riverdale"," 30 Jan. 2020 The revised bylaws, which had been discussed at a November workshop, also reiterate in three separate places that any non-faculty contract or extension with a buyout provision must be approved by the full board, or its designees. John Kelly, USA TODAY, "Does Gus Malzahn’s massive buyout at Auburn make him untouchable?," 22 Oct. 2019 The move potentially violated NCAA bylaws, which ban paying players. John Gage, Washington Examiner, "VIDEO: NFL star slapped with arrest warrant after spanking police officer on the rear," 16 Jan. 2020 Now pull it all together: restrictive covenants, POA bylaws, POA minutes and the statutes. Dallas News, "Reining in Your POA," 6 Jan. 2020 That meeting also saw the addition of 70 new members seated to the SDEC on new minority caucuses, as required by the DNC’s bylaws. John Sharp |, al, "Worley faction of Alabama Democratic Party vows to continue legal fight against ‘splinter group’," 16 Nov. 2019 Intellectual property law aside, some new innovations face problems due to outdated bylaws, risk-averse company cultures, and regulatory processes that focus only on the potential downsides. K.n.c., The Economist, "The value of freeing ideas, not just locking them up," 8 Nov. 2019 Even the pretend bylaws the Pretend Party recognizes says there must be more than 100 executive committee members present to have a quorum. Kyle Whitmire, al, "It’s time Alabama Dems left Nancy’s Neverland behind," 21 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bylaw.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bylaw

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bylaw

Middle English bilawe, probably from Old Norse *bȳlǫg, from Old Norse bȳr town + lag-, lǫg law

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Time Traveler for bylaw

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The first known use of bylaw was in the 14th century

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Statistics for bylaw

Last Updated

21 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Bylaw.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for bylaw


How to pronounce bylaw (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of bylaw

US : a rule that an organization (such as a club or company) makes and that its members must follow
: a law or regulation that is made by a local government and that applies only to the local area


by·​law | \ ˈbī-ˌlȯ \

Legal Definition of bylaw

1 : a rule adopted by an organization chiefly for the government of its members and the management of its affairs
2 : a local ordinance often used in pl.

History and Etymology for bylaw

Middle English bilage, bilawe local law, probably ultimately from Old Norse bȳr town + lǫg law

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More from Merriam-Webster on bylaw

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bylaw

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bylaw

Spanish Central: Translation of bylaw

Nglish: Translation of bylaw for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bylaw for Arabic Speakers

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