the law temporarily imposed upon an area by state or national military forces when civil authority has broken down or during wartime military operations.
the law imposed upon a defeated country or occupied territory by the military forces of the occupying power.
martial lawRead more in this article about some frequently asked questions and fun facts related to our definitions.
Marshal vs. MartialWhile the words are pronounced the same, they do have different meanings. Martial is an adjective that describes things related to war. A marshal is a police or military officer. Martial can only be used as an adjective, but marshal can be used as either a noun or a verb, but not an adjective. “But what about marshall?” you ask? We’ll get to that in …
Origin of martial law
First recorded in 1525–35
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for martial law
The period of spies, and of the severe exercise of martial-law, was not yet reached; and all that was apprehended was detention.Wyandotte|James Fenimore Cooper
British Dictionary definitions for martial law
the rule of law established and maintained by the military in the absence of civil law
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