3. [syn: legal, sound, effectual]
4. relating to or characteristic of the profession of law;
- Example: "the legal profession"
5. allowed by official rules;
- Example: "a legal pass receiver"
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Legal \Le"gal\ (l[=e]"gal), a. [L. legalis, fr. lex, legis, law;
prob. orig., that which lies or is fixed (cf. L. lectus bed),
and if so akin to E. lie, law: cf. F. l['e]gal. Cf. Lie to
be prostrate, Loyal, Leal.]
1. Created by, permitted by, in conformity with, or relating
to, law; as, a legal obligation; a legal standard or test;
a legal procedure; a legal claim; a legal trade; anything
is legal which the laws do not forbid.
(a) According to the law of works, as distinguished from
free grace; or resting on works for salvation.
(b) According to the old or Mosaic dispensation; in
accordance with the law of Moses.
3. (Law) Governed by the rules of law as distinguished from
the rules of equity; as, legal estate; legal assets.
Legal cap. See under Cap.
(a) The act of tendering in the performance of a contract
or satisfaction of a claim that which the law
prescribes or permits, and at such time and place as
the law prescribes or permits.
(b) That currency, or money, which the law authorizes a
debtor to tender and requires a creditor to receive.
It differs in different countries.
Syn: Lawful; constitutional; legitimate; licit; authorized.
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
adj 1: established by or founded upon law or official or
accepted rules [ant: illegal]
2: of or relating to jurisprudence; "legal loophole"
3: having legal efficacy or force; "a sound title to the
property" [syn: legal, sound, effectual]
4: relating to or characteristic of the profession of law; "the
5: allowed by official rules; "a legal pass receiver"
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
85 Moby Thesaurus words for "legal":
acceptable, actionable, admissible, allowable, applicable,
authoritative, authorized, balanced, binding, booked, cogent,
competent, consistent, constitutional, defensible, deserved,
documented, down, due, enrolled, entered, equitable, even,
evenhanded, fair, fair and square, filed, fit, forensic, good,
indexed, inscribed, judicial, judiciary, juridical, just,
justiciable, justifiable, justified, kosher, lawful, lawmaking,
legislative, legit, legitimate, legitimized, level, licit, logged,
logical, meet, meet and right, merited, minuted, of record,
official, on file, on record, on the books, permissible, permitted,
posted, proper, recorded, registered, right, right and proper,
rightful, sanctionable, sanctioned, self-consistent, solid, sound,
square, statutory, substantial, sufficient, valid, warrantable,
warranted, weighty, well-founded, well-grounded, within the law,
The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003):
Loosely used to mean ?in accordance with all the relevant rules?, esp. in
connection with some set of constraints defined by software. ?The older =+
alternate for += is no longer legal syntax in ANSI C.? ?This parser
processes each line of legal input the moment it sees the trailing
linefeed.? Hackers often model their work as a sort of game played with the
environment in which the objective is to maneuver through the thicket of
?natural laws? to achieve a desired objective. Their use of legal is
flavored as much by this game-playing sense as by the more conventional one
having to do with courts and lawyers. Compare language lawyer, legalese
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (30 December 2018):
Loosely used to mean "in accordance with all the relevant
rules", especially in connection with some set of constraints
defined by software. "The older =+ alternate for += is no
longer legal syntax in ANSI C." "This parser processes each
line of legal input the moment it sees the trailing linefeed."
Hackers often model their work as a sort of game played with
the environment in which the objective is to maneuver through
the thicket of "natural laws" to achieve a desired objective.
Their use of "legal" is flavoured as much by this game-playing
sense as by the more conventional one having to do with courts
and lawyers. Compare language lawyer, legalese.
Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856):
LEGAL. That which is according to law. It is used in opposition to
equitable, as the legal estate is, in the trustee, the equitable estate in
the cestui que trust. Vide Powell on Mortg. Index, h.t.
2. The party who has the legal title, has alone the right to seek a
remedy for a wrong to his estate, in a court of law, though he may have no
beneficial interest in it. The equitable owner, is he who has not the legal
estate, but is entitled to the beneficial interest.
3. The person who holds the legal estate for the benefit of another, is
called a trustee; he who has the beneficiary interest and does not hold the
legal title, is called the beneficiary, or more technically, the cestui que
4. When the trustee has a claim, he must enforce his right in a court
of equity, for he cannot sue any one at law, in his own name; 1 East, 497; 8
T. R. 332; 1 Saund. 158, n. 1; 2 Bing. 20; still less can he in such court
sue his own trustee. 1 East, 497.