outlaw

noun
out·​law | \ ˈau̇t-ˌlȯ How to pronounce outlaw (audio) \

Definition of outlaw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person excluded from the benefit or protection of the law
2a : a lawless person or a fugitive from the law
b : a person or organization under a ban or restriction
c : one that is unconventional or rebellious
3 : an animal (such as a horse) that is wild and unmanageable

outlaw

verb
outlawed; outlawing; outlaws

Definition of outlaw (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to deprive of the benefit and protection of law : declare to be an outlaw
b : to make illegal outlawed dueling
2 : to place under a ban or restriction
3 : to remove from legal jurisdiction or enforcement

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Other Words from outlaw

Noun

outlaw adjective

Verb

outlawry \ ˈau̇t-​ˌlȯr-​ē How to pronounce outlawry (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for outlaw

Synonyms: Verb

criminalize, illegalize

Antonyms: Verb

decriminalize, legalize

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Examples of outlaw in a Sentence

Noun

Billy the Kid was one of the most famous outlaws of America's early history.

Verb

That type of gun was outlawed last year. The government passed a bill outlawing the hiring of children under the age of 12.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

At every turn, the game seems to beg you to slow down and simply live as outlaw protagonist Arthur Morgan. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Ars Technica’s best games of 2018," 24 Dec. 2018 The movie is based off of the almost too good to be true life story of Forrest Tucker, an outlaw who had a knack of politely robbing banks well into his 80s. Lauren Sanchez, Vogue, "Robert Redford Thanks Blake Lively and Charms Guests at Last Night’s Premiere for The Old Man & the Gun," 21 Sep. 2018 Ostensibly, this dirty lens on life is used to tell an earnest story about outlaws struggling to survive on the edge of modernity. Daniel Starkey, Ars Technica, "Red Dead Redemption II review: Getting muddy in the wide-open frontier," 25 Oct. 2018 Deaths from alcohol increased, as did drinking among teens drawn to the outlaw glamour that Prohibition created. Elizabeth Winkler, WSJ, "‘Liberated Spirits’ Review: When Alcohol Was a Women’s Issue," 25 Oct. 2018 This game’s central band of outlaws is sympathetic at times but never blameless. Daniel Starkey, Ars Technica, "Red Dead Redemption II review: Getting muddy in the wide-open frontier," 25 Oct. 2018 He is also accused of enabling a plot to extort $100,000 from the Mongols outlaw motorcycle gang. Crimesider Staff, CBS News, "Feds: Mexican Mafia runs California jails like an "illegal government"," 24 May 2018 The boys have combined to win 71 outlaw kart features over the past two seasons. Dave Kallmann, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Family racing fun gets serious as two talented boys give Travis Kvapil a run for his money," 15 June 2018 In the 1993 film Tombstone, an ailing Doc Holliday, colorfully played by Val Kilmer, commented on the bloody war his friend Wyatt Earp was waging on a gang of outlaws who killed one of his brothers. William Cummings, USA TODAY, "So what is this sexual harassment 'reckoning' everyone is talking about?," 17 Jan. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Jaish-e-Mohammed is outlawed in Pakistan but thought to operate from safe havens there. Munir Ahmed, The Seattle Times, "Pakistani PM willing to talk but warns India not to attack," 20 Feb. 2019 Mulesing has been outlawed in some countries but is still legal in Australia, the world’s largest producer of wool. Sarah Nassauer, WSJ, "Fiber Optics: Wool Lovers Battle Animal-Rights Crowd Over Sheep Shearing," 7 Jan. 2019 While in the past, wicks were made with lead in order to make the wick stiffer, lead wicks were officially outlawed by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission in 2003. Sam Gutierrez, House Beautiful, "Are Your Favorite Candles Slowly Poisoning You?," 26 Dec. 2018 Cars and development were soon outlawed in favor of bucolic blessings and mountain bikes. Elizabeth Wellington, Vogue, "This French Island Is the Nantucket of the Mediterranean," 16 Aug. 2018 In the last two years, Virginia and Texas outlawed marriages under age 18, unless the children have been legally emancipated. Fox News, "Missouri governor signs law banning marriage of 15-year-olds," 15 July 2018 The Law Enforcement Officer’s Protection Act, which outlawed armor-piercing bullets, came in 1986 as city gangs and drug violence came to city streets. Sally Bronston, NBC News, "Washington gun debate wasn’t always stuck in neutral," 18 Feb. 2018 The practice is not a crime at a federal level in the U.S., but Massachusetts state lawmakers outlawed the practice in 2014. Billy Perrigo, Time, "The U.K. Wanted to Ban Taking Photos Up Women's Skirts. One Lawmaker Shut it Down.," 15 June 2018 Cy-Fair is also outlawing trench coats and other heavy clothing that could conceal weapons, KTRK reported. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "No trench coats, backpacks allowed: Schools adjust rules after deadly Santa Fe school shooting," 21 May 2018

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for outlaw

Noun

Middle English outlawe, from Old English ūtlaga, from Old Norse ūtlagi, from ūt out (akin to Old English ūt out) + lag-, lǫg law — more at out, law

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Dictionary Entries near outlaw

outlandish

outlast

outlaugh

outlaw

outlay

outleap

outlearn

Statistics for outlaw

Last Updated

3 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for outlaw

The first known use of outlaw was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for outlaw

outlaw

noun

English Language Learners Definition of outlaw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who has broken the law and who is hiding or running away to avoid punishment

outlaw

verb

English Language Learners Definition of outlaw (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make (something) illegal

outlaw

noun
out·​law | \ ˈau̇t-ˌlȯ How to pronounce outlaw (audio) \

Kids Definition of outlaw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who has broken the law and is hiding or fleeing to avoid punishment

outlaw

verb
outlawed; outlawing

Kids Definition of outlaw (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make illegal Dueling was outlawed.

outlaw

noun
out·​law | \ ˈau̇t-ˌlȯ How to pronounce outlaw (audio) \

Legal Definition of outlaw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person excluded from the benefit or protection of the law a trespasser is not an outlaw
2 : a lawless person or a fugitive from the law
3 : a person or organization (as a nation) under a ban or restriction or considered to be in defiance of norms or laws considered an outlaw for its support of terrorism

Legal Definition of outlaw (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make illegal

Other Words from outlaw

outlawry \ ˈau̇t-​ˌlȯr-​ē How to pronounce outlawry (audio) \ noun

History and Etymology for outlaw

Noun

Old English ūtlaga, from Old Norse ūtlagi, from ūt out + lag lǫg law

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More from Merriam-Webster on outlaw

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with outlaw

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for outlaw

Spanish Central: Translation of outlaw

Nglish: Translation of outlaw for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of outlaw for Arabic Speakers

Comments on outlaw

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grandiloquent, ostentatious, or bombastic

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