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

  • n. The state, quality, or ideal of being just, impartial, and fair.
  • n. Something that is just, impartial, and fair.
  • n. Law Justice applied in circumstances covered by law yet influenced by principles of ethics and fairness.
  • n. Law A system of jurisprudence supplementing and serving to modify the rigor of common law.
  • n. Law An equitable right or claim.
  • n. Law Equity of redemption.
  • n. The residual value of a business or property beyond any mortgage thereon and liability therein.
  • n. The market value of securities less any debt incurred.
  • n. Common stock and preferred stock.
  • n. Funds provided to a business by the sale of stock.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Ownership, especially in terms of net monetary value of some business.
  • n. A legal tradition that deals with remedies other than monetary relief, such as injunctions, divorces and similar actions.
  • n. Value of property minus liens or other encumbrances.
  • n. Ownership interest in a company as determined by subtracting liabilities from assets.
  • n. Justice, impartiality or fairness.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Equality of rights; natural justice or right; the giving, or desiring to give, to each man his due, according to reason, and the law of God to man; fairness in determination of conflicting claims; impartiality.
  • n. An equitable claim; an equity of redemption
  • n. A system of jurisprudence, supplemental to law, properly so called, and complemental of it.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. That which is equally right or just to all concerned; equal or impartial justice; fairness; impartiality.
  • n. In law: Fairness in the adjustment of conflicting interests; the application of the dictates of good conscience to the settlement of controversies: often called natural equity.
  • n. The system of jurisprudence or body of doctrines and rules as to what is equitable and fair and what is not, by which the defects of, and the incidental hardships resulting from, the inflexibility of the forms and the universality of the rules of the common-law tribunals are corrected or remedied, and substantial justice is done.
  • n. The court or jurisdiction in which these doctrines are applied: as, a suit in equity.
  • n. An equitable right; that to which one is justly entitled; specifically, a right recognized by courts of equity which the common law did not provide for: as, the wife's equity, or her right, when her husband sought to enforce his common-law claim to reduce her property to his own possession, to have a portion of it settled on herself.
  • n. The remaining interest belonging to one who has pledged or mortgaged his property, or the surplus of value which may remain after the property has been disposed of for the satisfaction of liens. [U. S.]
  • n. A right or obligation incident to a property or contract as between two persons, but not incident to the property or contract from its own nature. In this sense used in the plural.
  • n. In conveyancing, in the United States, the ownership of or title to real property which is subject to a mortgage: sometimes simply called equity.
  • n. Right, Law, etc. See justice.

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

  • n. the difference between the market value of a property and the claims held against it
  • n. conformity with rules or standards
  • n. the ownership interest of shareholders in a corporation


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

Middle English equite, from Old French, from Latin aequitās, from aequus, even, fair.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Attested in the 14th Century CE; from Old French equité, from Latin aequitatem ("conformity”, “evenness”, “fairness").



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  • The current list of synonyms (Sept 9, 2010) only addresses the 'fairness' set of meanings. Not a synonym in sight for the 'what is owned, not owed' set of meanings.

    September 10, 2010