Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Grammar A group of words containing a subject and a predicate and forming part of a compound or complex sentence.
  • n. A distinct article, stipulation, or provision in a document.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. this sense?) (grammar, informal) A group of two or more words which include a subject and any necessary predicate (the predicate also includes a verb, conjunction, or a preposition) to begin the clause; however, this clause is not considered a sentence for colloquial purposes.
  • n. A verb along with its subject and their modifiers. If a clause provides a complete thought on its own, then it is an independent (superordinate) clause; otherwise, it is (subordinate) dependent.
  • n. A separate part of a contract, a will or another legal document.
  • v. To amend (a bill of lading or similar document).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A separate portion of a written paper, paragraph, or sentence; an article, stipulation, or proviso, in a legal document.
  • n. A subordinate portion or a subdivision of a sentence containing a subject and its predicate.
  • n. See Letters clause or Letters close, under letter.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Any part of a written composition, especially one containing complete sense in itself, as a sentence or paragraph: in modern use commonly limited to such parts of legal documents, as of statutes, contracts, wills, etc.
  • n. A distinct stipulation, condition, proviso, etc.: as, a special clause in a contract.
  • n. In grammar, one of the lesser sentences which united and modified form a compound or complex sentence.
  • n. That part of a bond which defines the amount of the penalty.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. (grammar) an expression including a subject and predicate but not constituting a complete sentence
  • n. a separate section of a legal document (as a statute or contract or will)

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, from Old French, from Medieval Latin clausa, close of a rhetorical period, from feminine of Latin clausus, past participle of claudere, to close.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, from Medieval Latin clausa ("a clause") (Latin diminutive clausula ("a clause, close of a period")), from Latin clausus, past participle of claudere ("to shut, close"); see close.

Examples

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