leg·​is·​la·​ture | \ ˈle-jə-ˌslā-chər How to pronounce legislature (audio) also ˌle-jə-ˈslā-, British often ˈle-jə-slə-chə \

Definition of legislature

: a body of persons having the power to legislate specifically : an organized body having the authority to make laws for a political unit

Examples of legislature in a Sentence

Our legislature passed a law requiring people to wear safety belts. Each state has its own legislature.
Recent Examples on the Web Mississippi’s legislature voted to remove the Confederate battle flag from the state flag, which has flown outside the Capitol building since 1894. The Economist, "Politics this week," 4 July 2020 Clay County Judge Michael McHaney sided with a GOP legislature on the matter earlier this week, stating that Pritzker’s orders became void on April 8. Anthony Leonardi, Washington Examiner, "Brett Kavanaugh declines request from Illinois Republicans to permit large political rallies amid coronavirus," 4 July 2020 And the state legislature would need to agree to pay for the state’s portion of funding for the expansion, at least 90 percent of which is covered by federal money under ACA rules. Amy Goldstein, BostonGlobe.com, "Oklahomans back Medicaid expansion in narrow vote," 2 July 2020 The legislature deliberated for about a month before passing the national security bill into law on Tuesday. Fox News, "Hundreds arrested in Hong Kong after China imposes new national security law," 2 July 2020 The law went into effect Jan. 1 after a winding and sometimes surprising route through a voter ballot process, the state legislature and a contentious amendment period culminating in a final version last fall. Rachel Lerman, Washington Post, "California begins enforcing digital privacy law, despite calls for delay," 1 July 2020 Mississippi's legislature voted on Sunday to remove the flag, which was the last in the country to display the battle emblem. Victoria Albert, CBS News, "Mississippi governor signs bill removing state flag with Confederate emblem," 1 July 2020 Ohio’s legislature is predominantly male and Lehner said the children’s caucus is predominantly female. Emily Bamforth, cleveland, "Early education leaders discuss rebuilding ‘workforce behind the workforce’ after coronavirus closures," 1 July 2020 Beijing finally decided to circumvent the Hong Kong legislature and have the law passed Tuesday by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, China’s rubber-stamp parliament. Zen Soo, The Christian Science Monitor, "In Hong Kong, arrests begin a day after passing new security law," 1 July 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of legislature

circa 1676, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about legislature

Time Traveler for legislature

Time Traveler

The first known use of legislature was circa 1676

See more words from the same year

Statistics for legislature

Last Updated

8 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Legislature.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/legislature. Accessed 13 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for legislature


How to pronounce legislature (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of legislature

: a group of people with the power to make or change laws


leg·​is·​la·​ture | \ ˈle-jə-ˌslā-chər How to pronounce legislature (audio) \

Kids Definition of legislature

: a body of persons having the power to make and change laws


leg·​is·​la·​ture | \ ˈle-jəs-ˌlā-chər, -ˌchu̇r How to pronounce legislature (audio) \

Legal Definition of legislature

: a body of persons having the power to legislate specifically : an organized body having the authority to make laws for a political unit (as a nation or state) — compare executive, judiciary

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on legislature

What made you want to look up legislature? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!