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Encyclopedia > Law dictionary

A law dictionary is a dictionary that is designed and compiled to give information about terms used in the field of law. Law (from the late Old English lagu of probable North Germanic origin) in politics and jurisprudence, is a set of rules or norms of conduct which mandate, forbid or permit specified relationships among people and organizations, intended to provide methods for ensuring the impartial treatment of such people, and provide... A dictionary is a list of words with their definitions, a list of characters with their glyphs, or a list of words with corresponding words in other languages. ... Information as a concept bears a diversity of meanings, from everyday usage to technical settings. ...


A distinction is made between different types of law dictionaries. A monolingual law dictionary covers one language, a bilingual covers two. Monoglottism (Greek monos, alone, solitary, + glotta, tongue, language) is the condition of being able to speak only a single language. ... The term bilingualism (from bi meaning two and lingua meaning language) can refer to rather different phenomena. ...


A distinction may also be made as to its coverage. A law dictionary that covers an entire field of law is called a single-field dictionary, whereas a dictionary that covers a part of a field of law is called a sub-field dictionary, e.g. a dictionary of contract law. If the law dictionary attempts to cover all the terms in the field of law, its is called a maximizing dictionary, and if it attempts to cover only a limited number of terms, it is called a minimizing dictionary. A single-field dictionary is a specialized dictionary that has been designed and compiled to cover the terms of one particular subject field. ... A sub-field dictionary is a specialized dictionary that has been designed and compiled to cover the terms of one (or possibly more) sub-fields of a particular subject field. ... A contract is a promise or an agreement that is enforced or recognized by the law. ... A dictionary is maximizing if it attempts to include as many words as possible from a particular speech community. ... A dictionary is minimizing if it attempts to include only a limited selction of words from a particular speech community. ...


A good bilingual law dictionary needs to take the users' expected language and professional competences into account. The lexicographers therefore need to consider the following aspects: dictionary user research, dictionary typology, structure and presentation of the relevant information. When making a law dictionary, the lexicographers attempt to present the information in such a way that the user is not burdened with excessive lexicographic information costs. Lexicography is either of two things Practical lexicography is the art or craft of writing dictionaries. ... The word typology literally means the study of types. ... Lexicographic information cost is a new concept within the field of lexicography. ...


Relevant literature

  • Sandro Nielsen: The Bilingual LSP Dictionary. Principles and Practice for Legal Language. Gunter Narr Verlag 1994.

1994 (MCMXCIV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated as the International Year of the Family and the International Year of the Sport and the Olympic Ideal. // Events January Bill Clinton January 1 : North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) goes into effect. ...

Downloadable Law Dictionaries

  • Dean's Law Dictionary - created by artificial intelligence with over 185,000 terms and 300,000 case cites.

Online Law Dictionaries

  • LawyerIntl.com Legal Dictionary - Compilation of Law Dictionaries including Bouvier's Legal Dictionary 6th Edition
  • The 'Lectric Law Library - the gateway to 1000's of pages of free legal information and free legal forms.

  Results from FactBites:
 
Duhaime's Legal Dictionary of Law Terms (146 words)
It is not intended to be legal advice and you would be foolhardy to rely on it in respect to any specific situation you or an acquaintance may be facing.
In addition, the law changes rapidly and sometimes with little notice so from time to time, an article may not be up to date.
Therefore, this is merely legal information designed to educate the reader.
Black's Law Dictionary - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (416 words)
Black's Law Dictionary has traditionally been regarded as the definitive legal dictionary for the law of the United States.
As many legal terms derive from Latin, the Dictionary gives a pronunciation guide for such terms and the applicable entries provide pronunciation transcriptions consistent with those found among North American practitioners of law or medicine.
The second edition of Black's Law Dictionary (1910) is now in the public domain.
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