- permitted by law; lawful: Such acts are not legal.
- of or relating to law; connected with the law or its administration: the legal profession.
- appointed, established, or authorized by law; deriving authority from law.
- recognized by law rather than by equity.
- of, relating to, or characteristic of the profession of law or of lawyers: a legal mind.
- of or relating to the Mosaic Law.
- of or relating to the doctrine that salvation is gained by good works rather than through free grace.
- a person who acts in a legal manner or with legal authority.
- an alien who has entered a country legally.
- a person whose status is protected by law.
- a fish or game animal, within specified size or weight limitations, that the law allows to be caught and kept during an appropriate season.
- a foreigner who conducts espionage against a host country while working there in a legitimate capacity, often in the diplomatic service.
- legals, authorized investments that may be made by fiduciaries, as savings banks or trustees.
Origin of legal
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for legally
In our headlong quest for a legally perfect society, we don’t take the time to take stock of what‘s been created so far.Red Tape Is Strangling Good Samaritans
Philip K. Howard
December 27, 2014
Interestingly, if Grimm is expelled, he is not legally prohibited from running in the special election for his seat.The Felon Who Wouldn’t Leave Congress
Ben Jacobs, David Freedlander
December 23, 2014
The two girls were legally emancipated and returned to the Covington household.Beaten By His Church for Being Gay
December 16, 2014
Administration lawyers also approved the "enhanced interrogation techniques" and said they were legally permissible.Fact-Checking the Sunday Shows: Dec. 14
December 14, 2014
Because you were covering up for actions that may or may not have been legally authorized.After Torture Report, Our Moral Authority As a Nation Is Gone
December 11, 2014
She was legally a wife, and could only be separated from him through convicted shame.Malbone
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
You see, he wanted to get my money illegally, but instead I managed to get his legally.Within the Law
He took no notice of me, and I got no assistance; perhaps I was legally entitled to none.Ned Myers
James Fenimore Cooper
Legally, we should have difficulty in getting at you, but it can be done.Roden's Corner
Henry Seton Merriman
The father of Moses and Aaron married his father's sister, who was not legally his relation.The Truth About Woman
C. Gasquoine Hartley
- established by or founded upon law; lawful
- of or relating to law
- recognized, enforceable, or having a remedy at law rather than in equity
- relating to or characteristic of the profession of law
Word Origin and History for legally
mid-15c. "of or pertaining to the law," from Middle French légal or directly from Latin legalis "legal, pertaining to the law," from lex (genitive legis) "law," possibly related to legere "to gather," on notion of "a collection of rules" (see lecture (n.)).