gravamen

[ gruh-vey-muhn ]
/ grəˈveɪ mən /

noun, plural gra·vam·i·na [gruh-vam-uh-nuh]. /grəˈvæm ə nə/. Law.

the part of an accusation that weighs most heavily against the accused; the substantial part of a charge or complaint.
a grievance.

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Origin of gravamen

1595–1605; <Late Latin: trouble, physical inconvenience, equivalent to Latin gravā(re) to load, weigh down (derivative of gravis heavy, burdened) + -men noun suffix
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for gravamen

British Dictionary definitions for gravamen

gravamen
/ (ɡrəˈveɪmɛn) /

noun plural -vamina (-ˈvæmɪnə)

law that part of an accusation weighing most heavily against an accused
law the substance or material grounds of a complaint
a rare word for grievance

Word Origin for gravamen

C17: from Late Latin: trouble, from Latin gravāre to load, from gravis heavy; see grave ²
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