The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Corporation \Cor`po*ra"tion\ (k[^o]r`p[-o]*r[=a]"sh[u^]n), n.
[L. corporatio incarnation: cf. F. corporation corporation.]
A body politic or corporate, formed and authorized by law to
act as a single person, and endowed by law with the capacity
of succession; a society having the capacity of transacting
business as an individual.
Note: Corporations are aggregate or sole. Corporations
aggregate consist of two or more persons united in a
society, which is preserved by a succession of members,
either forever or till the corporation is dissolved by
the power that formed it, by the death of all its
members, by surrender of its charter or franchises, or
by forfeiture. Such corporations are the mayor and
aldermen of cities, the head and fellows of a college,
the dean and chapter of a cathedral church, the
stockholders of a bank or insurance company, etc. A
corporation sole consists of a single person, who is
made a body corporate and politic, in order to give him
some legal capacities, and especially that of
succession, which as a natural person he can not have.
Kings, bishops, deans, parsons, and vicars, are in
England sole corporations. A fee will not pass to a
corporation sole without the word "successors" in the
grant. There are instances in the United States of a
minister of a parish seized of parsonage lands in the
right of his parish, being a corporation sole, as in
Massachusetts. Corporations are sometimes classified as
public and private; public being convertible with
municipal, and private corporations being all
corporations not municipal.
Close corporation. See under Close.