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Nonprofessional, such as a lay witness who is not a recognized expert in the area that is the subject of the person's testimony. That which relates to persons or entities not clerical or ecclesiastical; a person not in ecclesiastical orders. To present the formal declarations by the parties of their respective claims and defenses in pleadings. A share of the profits of a fishing or Whaling voyage, allotted to the officers and seamen, in the nature of wages.

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

LAY, English law. That which relates to persons or things not ecclesiastical. In the United States the people are not, by law, divided, as in England, into ecclesiastical and lay. The law makes no distinction between them.

TO LAY, pleading. To state or to allege. The place from whence a jury are to be summoned, is called the venue, and the allegation in the declaration, of the place where the jury is to be summoned, is in technical language, said to lay the venue. 3 Steph. Com. 574; 3 Bouv. Inst. n. 2826.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Laying bare a network of long-buried secrets, new gravity maps suggest that the Red Planet has an extensive system of channels, now covered by sediment, that several billion years ago were on the surface and may have carried water.
This context allows Miller to counter the largely pious and sentimental readings of Jonson's celebrated poem, "On My First Sonne," by laying bare its narcissism, showing that the death of his son constitutes Jonson's own symbolic identity, and that the poem enables him to take possession of his son's death in order to defend against his own.
But to grasp Shapin's insistence on the crucial importance of laying bare the collective norms then being adumbrated for science, it is necessary to contextualize his project within intense historiographical controversies regarding the rise of modern science.