leg·​is·​la·​ture ˈle-jə-ˌslā-chər How to pronounce legislature (audio)
 also  ˌle-jə-ˈslā-,
 British often  ˈle-jə-slə-chə
: 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 At the time, Parson cited two amendments related to criminal expungements and restitution as his reason for overriding the state legislature. Natalie Wallington, Kansas City Star, 17 Apr. 2024 The alleged practice violates Illinois' Biometric Information Privacy Act, the lawsuit contends, a law the state legislature passed in 2008 to protect people from details of their physical characteristics being collected without their knowledge. Eric Lagatta, USA TODAY, 16 Apr. 2024 But left unresolved is who has the right to decide what is appropriate for each patient: parents and doctors, or the state legislature? Nina Totenberg, NPR, 15 Apr. 2024 In addition to Iowa’s new law, Cid says several recent immigration proposals in the state failed to clear the legislature. Catherine E. Shoichet, CNN, 14 Apr. 2024 And Minnesota Public Radio reports that other council members are waiting to see if the state legislature takes action before July. Melvin Backman, Quartz, 12 Apr. 2024 After the state legislature established the American Revolution Bicentennial Commission in 1967, which promoted statewide and local celebrations of the country’s bicentennial, Huntington Beach formed a special committee in the early 1970s to plan a celebration parade. Hanna Kang, Orange County Register, 12 Apr. 2024 The Cowboy State legislature recently changed nonresident allocation from 25 percent to 10 percent, dropping the number of nonresident tags by half. Christine Peterson, Outdoor Life, 11 Apr. 2024 In the nation's early days, many states awarded their electoral votes by having the state legislature choose electors. Geoffrey Skelley, ABC News, 11 Apr. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'legislature.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1676, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of legislature was circa 1676

Dictionary Entries Near legislature

Cite this Entry

“Legislature.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/legislature. Accessed 22 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


leg·​is·​la·​ture ˈlej-ə-ˌslā-chər How to pronounce legislature (audio)
: an organized body of persons having the authority to make laws

Legal Definition


leg·​is·​la·​ture ˈle-jəs-ˌlā-chər, -ˌchu̇r How to pronounce legislature (audio)
: 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
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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