\ ˈē-ˌdikt How to pronounce edict (audio) \

Definition of edict

1 : a proclamation having the force of law
2 : order, command we held firm to Grandmother's edict— M. F. K. Fisher

Other Words from edict

edictal \ i-​ˈdik-​tᵊl How to pronounce edict (audio) \ adjective

Did you know?

Edicts are few and far between in a democracy, since very few important laws can be made by a president or prime minister acting alone. But when a crisis arose in the Roman Republic, the senate would appoint a dictator, who would have the power to rule by edict. The idea was that the dictator could make decisions quickly, issuing his edicts faster than the senate could act. When the crisis was over, the edicts were canceled and the dictator usually retired from public life. Things are different today: dictators almost always install themselves in power, and they never give it up.

Examples of edict in a Sentence

The government issued an edict banning public demonstrations. the school board's edict put a new student dress code into effect
Recent Examples on the Web In September 2019, Trump revoked California's waiver under the clean air act, with the intention of bringing it under an Environmental Protection Agency that had been weakened by executive branch edict. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, 9 June 2022 There is anger among Afghan women as a face veil edict splits the Taliban. Los Angeles Times, 9 May 2022 In January, the Supreme Court blocked a Biden administration edict that large employers require workers to get vaccinated or submit to regular testing. New York Times, 18 Apr. 2022 An unspoken edict amongst former Fed chairs has been to not speak ill of their successors to preserve the apolitical nature of and trust in the institution. Nicole Goodkind, CNN, 16 May 2022 The edict said only a woman’s eyes should be visible. Kathy Gannon, The Christian Science Monitor, 9 May 2022 Slugger Frank Thomas, who often spent his pregame time watching video, was visibly upset by the edict and said the idea was nice but short-sighted. Paul Sullivan, chicagotribune.com, 31 Mar. 2022 The government edict comes as driving schools scramble to make up for pandemic closures. David J. Lynch, Anchorage Daily News, 17 Dec. 2021 Ayatollah Khamenei had even issued an edict declaring that such a weapon would violate Islamic law. New York Times, 18 Sep. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of edict

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for edict

Middle English, from Latin edictum, from neuter of edictus, past participle of edicere to decree, from e- + dicere to say — more at diction

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Time Traveler for edict

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near edict

edible snail


edictal citation

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Last Updated

29 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Edict.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/edict. Accessed 4 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for edict


\ ˈē-ˌdikt How to pronounce edict (audio) \

Kids Definition of edict

: a command or law given or made by an authority (as a ruler)

More from Merriam-Webster on edict

Nglish: Translation of edict for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of edict for Arabic Speakers


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