actus reus

noun
ac·​tus re·​us | \ ˈak-təs-ˈrē-əs, ˈäk-tu̇s-ˈrā-u̇s\

Legal Definition of actus reus

: the wrongful act that makes up the physical action of a crime — see also crime — compare mens rea

History and Etymology for actus reus

New Latin, guilty deed

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on actus reus

Nglish: Translation of actus reus for Spanish Speakers

Comments on actus reus

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

WORD OF THE DAY

marked by turns or indirection

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Summer 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a-bowl-of-peach-sorbet-with-cut-peaches-next-to-it
  • Which is a synonym of desideratum?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

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!