Bradwell v. Illinois

U.S. Case Law

Legal Definition of Bradwell v. Illinois

83 U.S. 130 (1873), upheld an Illinois Supreme Court decision that denied a woman (Bradwell) the right to practice law because of her gender. The case was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court on the ground that the state court's decision was at odds with the privileges and immunities clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, but the high court took the same narrow view of the clause that it had established (only the day before) in the Slaughterhouse Cases (see also Butchers' Benevolent Assoc. of New Orleans v. Crescent City Livestock Landing and Slaughter-house Co.). As a result, sex-discriminatory statutes did not begin being struck down on Fourteenth Amendment grounds until well into the 20th century.

Comments on Bradwell v. Illinois

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to mark by some ceremony or observation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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