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A decree or law of major import promulgated by a king, queen, or other sovereign of a government.

An edict can be distinguished from a public proclamation in that an edict puts a new statute into effect whereas a public proclamation is no more than a declaration of a law prior to its actual enactment.

Under Roman Law, an edict had different meanings. It was usually a mandate published under the authority of a ruler that commanded the observance of various rules or injunctions. Sometimes, however, an edict was a citation to appear before a judge.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

EDICT. A law ordained by the sovereign, by which he forbids or commands something it extends either to the whole country, or only to some particular provinces.
     2. Edicts are somewhat similar to public proclamations. Their difference consists in this, that the former have authority and form of law in themselves, whereas the latter are at most, declarations of a law, before enacted by congress, or the legislature.
     3. Among the Romans this word sometimes signified, a citation to appear before a judge. The edict of the emperors, also called constitutiones principum, were new laws which they made of their own motion, either to decide cases which they had foreseen, or to abolish or change some ancient laws. They were different from their rescripts or decrees. These edicts were the sources which contributed to the formation of the Gregorian, Hermogenian, Theodosian, and Justinian Codes. Vide Dig. 1, 4, 1, 1; Inst. 1, 2, 7; Code, 1, 1 Nov. 139.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Edict 29/2019 stipulated the appointment of Ahmed Adel Ali Al Yahya as Director of Planning and Manpower Balance in the Civil Service Bureau.
Under the fourth edict, Diana Faisal Sarhan has been appointed director of the Public Libraries Directorate, affiliated with the Education Ministry.
This imagery is repeated on copper-plate and rock edicts of various kings who belonged to the Kolhapur branch of the Shilahara dynasty.
He accomplished the task through a series of edicts inscribed on rocks and pillars all over the empire.
The first article of this edict stipulates that the Social Development Ministry is the relevant administrative body and the Social Development Minister the relevant minister.
Dr Ahmad Al Kubaisi, Head of the Legislative Committee at the Ministry of Justice in the UAE, says the original as well as the modified versions of Al Luhaidan's edict against the owners of satellite television channels are wrong and baseless, and has called on Muslim scholars all over the world to stand up against it.
Edict (21) appointed Adnan Mohammed Hashim Al Sadah as Social Programmes and Community Affairs director in Muharraq Governorate.
One of those edicts, according to an article in The Washington Post, established five-year terms of office for Iraq's national security adviser and national intelligence chief.
(It is not known if Clara was Giovanni Francesco's daughter or widow.) Clara operated the press, the only one in Trino, from 1579 to 1595, printing official edicts for the Gonzaga dukes.
4 (BNA): His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and Economic Development Board (EDB) Chairman issued three edicts of 2019.
A DECISION to write off outstanding utility bills and municipal fees of the deceased was among five edicts issued yesterday by His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa.
16 (BNA): His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince and First Deputy Prime Minister, issued Edicts 2, 3 and 4/2019 appointing directors in the Ministry of Finance and National Economy, the Civil Service Bureau, and the Information and eGovernment Authority.