Definition of unlawful in English:

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Pronunciation: /ʌnˈlɔːfʊl/
Pronunciation: /ʌnˈlɔːf(ə)l/


Not conforming to, permitted by, or recognized by law or rules: the use of unlawful violence they claimed the ban was unlawful
More example sentences
  • Each of the people who uses or threatens unlawful violence will be guilty of the offence.
  • The House of Lords had to determine whether the rule amounted to such unlawful discrimination.
  • If malice aforethought is lacking the unlawful homicide will be manslaughter.
illegal, illicit, lawbreaking, illegitimate, against the law;
criminal, felonious, indictable, actionable, delinquent, culpable;
prohibited, banned, outlawed, proscribed, forbidden, unauthorized, unsanctioned, unwarranted, unlicensed, contraband, black-market, under the counter/table;
villainous, corrupt, dishonest, fraudulent, nefarious;
German verboten
informal crooked, shady, bent
archaic miscreant


On the difference between unlawful and illegal, see illegal (usage).



Pronunciation: /ʌnˈlɔːfʊlnəs/ Pronunciation: /ʌnˈlɔːf(ə)lnəs/
Example sentences
  • It may, your Honour, but we would put it in terms of once you have reached that point, you are identifying unlawfulness and not merely judicial perception of abuse.
  • Only if there was no intent and no negligence as to the unlawfulness, is the accused not liable criminally.
  • It did not matter that neither party could enforce the unlawfulness by independent cause of action.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: un|law¦ful

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