- a lawless person or habitual criminal, especially one who is a fugitive from the law.
- a person, group, or thing excluded from the benefits and protection of the law.
- a person under sentence of outlawry.
- a person who refuses to be governed by the established rules or practices of any group; rebel; nonconformist: one of the outlaws of country music.
- Chiefly Western U.S.
- a horse that cannot be broken; a mean, intractable horse.
- any rogue animal.
- to make unlawful or illegal: The Eighteenth Amendment outlawed the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating beverages in the U.S.
- to deprive of thebenefits and protection of the law: Members of guerrilla bands who refused to surrender were outlawed.
- to prohibit: to outlaw smoking in a theater.
- to remove from legal jurisdiction; deprive of legal force.
- of, relating to, or characteristic of an outlaw.
Origin of outlaw
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for outlaw
And yet, no one in Rio is calling for the end of the campaign to reclaim the outlaw zones of the city.Rio’s Security Crisis
August 7, 2013
The outlaw had a long white beard and looked like an intense Willie Nelson.How Green Is Your Green? Pot’s Terrible Environmental Record
July 7, 2013
Many court watchers were expecting the justices to outlaw or seriously curtail all uses of race by government actors.Affirmative Action Lives! What Happened at the Supreme Court
June 24, 2013
Once said to have been rewriting the rules of journalism, Assange has become an outlaw librarian.How Julian Assange Fooled the Media Once Again
April 16, 2013
Hacker wins the prime ministership by denouncing an EU plot to outlaw the British sausage.Partisanship too Far? Republicans Shouldn't Stand With Rand
March 11, 2013
The words of the outlaw had struck something in him that was like metal chiming on metal.
And that minute he turned me from a scared kid into an outlaw—a killer.
He was severely blamed in the press for parleying with an outlaw.
The friends of the outlaw made a last effort to bring about an accommodation.
Perhaps the outlaw realized at last how severely he had tried his friends' patience.
- (formerly) a person excluded from the law and deprived of its protection
- any fugitive from the law, esp a habitual transgressor
- a wild or untamed beast
- to put (a person) outside the law and deprive of its protection
- (in the US) to deprive (a contract) of legal force
- to ban
Word Origin and History for outlaw
Old English utlaga "one put outside the law" (and thereby deprived of its benefits and protections), from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse utlagi (n.) "outlaw," from utlagr (adj.) "outlawed, banished," from ut "out" (see out (adv.)) + *lagu, plural of lag "law" (see law).
[G]if he man to deaðe gefylle, beo he þonne utlah ["Laws of Edward & Guthrum," c.924]
Meaning "one living a lawless life" is first recorded 1880. As an adjective from Old English.
Old English utlagian "to outlaw, banish," from utlaga "an outlaw" (see outlaw (n.)). Related: Outlawed; outlawing.