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: a violation of law : disregard of the restraints of law : illegality, lawlessness
times of unlaw alternate with times of lawFrederick Pollock & F. W. Maitland
Scots law : a fine or amercement for a violation of law


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transitive verb

Scots law : to impose a fine upon
[un- entry 2 + law, noun] obsolete : to deprive of the character of a law : annul

Word History



Middle English unlawe, from Old English unlagu, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse ōlög, ūlög illegality, lawlessness, from ō-, ū- un- + lög law

Transitive verb

Middle English (Scots) unlawen, from unlawe, noun

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Dictionary Entries Near unlaw

Cite this Entry

“Unlaw.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unlaw. Accessed 1 Mar. 2024.

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