statute

noun

stat·​ute ˈsta-(ˌ)chüt How to pronounce statute (audio)
-chət
1
: a law enacted by the legislative branch of a government
2
: an act of a corporation or of its founder intended as a permanent rule
3
: an international instrument setting up an agency and regulating its scope or authority
Choose the Right Synonym for statute

law, rule, regulation, precept, statute, ordinance, canon mean a principle governing action or procedure.

law implies imposition by a sovereign authority and the obligation of obedience on the part of all subject to that authority.

obey the law

rule applies to more restricted or specific situations.

the rules of the game

regulation implies prescription by authority in order to control an organization or system.

regulations affecting nuclear power plants

precept commonly suggests something advisory and not obligatory communicated typically through teaching.

the precepts of effective writing

statute implies a law enacted by a legislative body.

a statute requiring the use of seat belts

ordinance applies to an order governing some detail of procedure or conduct enforced by a limited authority such as a municipality.

a city ordinance

canon suggests in nonreligious use a principle or rule of behavior or procedure commonly accepted as a valid guide.

the canons of good taste

Examples of statute in a Sentence

The state legislature passed the statute by an overwhelming margin. business practices that are prohibited by statute
Recent Examples on the Web Corcoran attorneys also raised concerns about a secrecy statute enacted by state lawmakers to protect the drug protocol and source of drugs used for lethal injections, an issue that was partially responsible for the state halting executions over the last 14 years. Tim Evans, The Indianapolis Star, 12 July 2024 King: The eviction process for Maricopa County follows the same state statutes as all other Arizona counties. Christina Avery, The Arizona Republic, 11 July 2024 Administrative law developed as a result of Congress creating executive agencies and passing broad statutes, which delegate a constrained degree of lawmaking authority to what has become a vast and highly professionalized bureaucracy that the president oversees. David Faris, Newsweek, 10 July 2024 The nation’s highest court narrowed the scope of the federal bribery statute to exclude gratuities – payments or rewards made after an official act. Brett Rowland | The Center Square, Washington Examiner - Political News and Conservative Analysis About Congress, the President, and the Federal Government, 10 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for statute 

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

Word History

Etymology

Middle English, from Anglo-French estatut, from Late Latin statutum law, regulation, from Latin, neuter of statutus, past participle of statuere to set up, station, from status position, state

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of statute was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near statute

Cite this Entry

“Statute.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/statute. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

statute

noun
stat·​ute ˈstach-üt How to pronounce statute (audio)
-ət
: a law put into effect by the legislative branch of a government

Legal Definition

statute

noun
stat·​ute ˈsta-chüt How to pronounce statute (audio)
1
: a law enacted by the legislative branch of a government see also code, statutory law
2
: an act of a corporation or its founder intended as a permanent rule
3
: an international instrument setting up an agency and regulating its scope or authority
the statute of the International Court of Justice
Etymology

Latin statutum law, regulation, from neuter of statutus, past participle of statuere to set up, station, from status position, state

More from Merriam-Webster on statute

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