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malice aforethought

noun, Law.
a predetermination to commit an unlawful act without just cause or provocation (applied chiefly to cases of first-degree murder).
Also called malice prepense.
Origin of malice aforethought
First recorded in 1660-70 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for malice aforethought

malice aforethought

noun (criminal law)
the predetermination to do an unlawful act, esp to kill or seriously injure
the intent with which an unlawful killing is effected, which must be proved for the crime to constitute murder See also murder, manslaughter
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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