Definition of Salic law in English:

Share this entry

Salic law



1A law excluding females from dynastic succession, especially as the alleged fundamental law of the French monarchy.
Example sentences
  • Instead they consisted of general principles such as the inalienability of the royal domain, the Salic law of succession (through the direct male line), and, after the conversion of Henri IV in 1593, that the king should be a Catholic.
  • Under Salic law (which prohibits succession in the female line), Ernst would be the British king rather than just the Prince of Hanover.
  • There was no attempt to impose Salic law (all-male succession): since the extinction of the House of Hanover in 1837, we have been ruled by women for 117 years, by men for 51 years, but never by a Catholic.
2A Frankish law book extant in Merovingian and Carolingian times.
Example sentences
  • There are signs that early Frankish villages - or groups of villages - had local courts, run by local judicial experts called rachimburgi, who knew an oral version of Salic law, and could be instructed to ‘speak’ it by litigants.
  • The so-called Salic law (Pactus legis salicae in Latin), was modelled on the Roman Law and incorporated elements of Frankish traditions.
  • Historically, Salic law was a collection of local Frankish laws and customs, and had nothing to do with questions of succession.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: Salic law

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.