leg·​is·​la·​tion | \ˌle-jə-ˈslā-shən \

Definition of legislation 

1 : the action of legislating specifically : the exercise of the power and function of making rules (such as laws) that have the force of authority by virtue of their promulgation by an official organ of a state or other organization the major function of Congress is legislation — W. S. Sayre

2 : the enactments of a legislator or a legislative body legislation to help distressed homeowners

3 : a matter of business for or under consideration by a legislative body She proposed new legislation to protect the environment.

Examples of legislation in a Sentence

They passed new state legislation this week. Two new pieces of legislation are being considered. She introduced legislation for protecting the environment. More legislation is needed on this matter. Certain animals are protected under state legislation. One of the important functions of government is legislation.
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Recent Examples on the Web

With the party in control of the state Senate and governor’s office as well, Democrats are preparing to advance an ambitious agenda of environmental and other legislation. Joseph O’sullivan, The Seattle Times, "Long-serving Frank Chopp to step down as Washington’s state House speaker after 2019 session," 27 Nov. 2018 As a new piece of legislation enacted in May, GDPR violations are still relatively untested in courts so it’s unclear exactly how strong of a case these seven consumer groups have. Jon Porter, The Verge, "Google accused of GDPR privacy violations by seven countries," 27 Nov. 2018 All of the major legislation of Bush’s first term — tax cuts, Medicare reform, the Iraq War authorization, more tax cuts — passed with Democratic votes. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "The time Nancy Pelosi saved Social Security," 21 Nov. 2018 Critics of the La Canada-Flintridge Democrat's legislation say kids could just go to bed earlier. Fox News, "California Gov. Jerry Brown blocks later school start time mandate," 20 Sep. 2018 This particular piece of sexist legislation has drawn some proponents for change. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "Why Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Kids Won't Be Princes or Princesses," 15 Oct. 2018 Asked months later about the defeat of his legislation, the governor said gun-control groups are simply not as unified as the pro-gun lobby. Ryan J. Foley, Fox News, "AP: Despite shootings, states return to familiar patterns," 26 Sep. 2018 We've been fed this propaganda that only certain people can serve at certain levels and as a results, our legislation hasn't truly been inclusive. Bridget Read, Vogue, "Delaware Democratic Senate Hopeful Kerri Harris Is a Queer Woman of Color Who Wants Politicians With "Diversity of Experience"," 29 Aug. 2018 But the Vermont independent mischaracterizes a study from a libertarian policy institute that found his legislation would lead to a massive boost in federal spending and taxation. Christopher Rugaber, The Seattle Times, "Fact-checking Trump’s week of economic and other fictions," 13 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'legislation.' 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 legislation

1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

2 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for legislation

The first known use of legislation was in 1606

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English Language Learners Definition of legislation

: a law or set of laws made by a government

: the action or process of making laws


leg·​is·​la·​tion | \ˌle-jə-ˈslā-shən \

Kids Definition of legislation

1 : the action of making laws

2 : the laws that are made Congress passed new legislation protecting the environment.


leg·​is·​la·​tion | \ˌle-jəs-ˈlā-shən \

Legal Definition of legislation 

1 : the making or giving of laws specifically : the exercise of the power and function of making rules that have the force of authority by virtue of their promulgation by an official organ of the state

2 : the enactments of a legislator or legislative body

3 : a matter of business for or under consideration by a legislative body recently proposed legislation

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More from Merriam-Webster on legislation

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with legislation

Spanish Central: Translation of legislation

Nglish: Translation of legislation for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of legislation for Arabic Speakers

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