Law Dictionaries

Published on: Author: Teresa L

Where can you find a good law dictionary? The preeminent law dictionary for American Law is Black’s Law Dictionary. It is available in the First Floor Library at the Circulation Desk and the Reference Desk and on the regular shelves at KF156 .B53 2004. There is a copy available on the dictionary stand in the Gold Reading Room. There is also a copy available in the Computer Lab on Floor 1M. The first edition of Black’s was published in 1891; the most recent edition is the 8th edition published in 2004.
The 8th edition of Black’s is also available on Westlaw.
There are some very basic law dictionaries available for free online:
Commonly Used Terms (Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts)
Everybody’s Legal Glossary (Nolo Press)
Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law, 1996 (Findlaw)
People’s Law Dictionary (
Law Dictionary–Glossary of Legal Terms (
One-L Dictionary (Harvard Law Library)
Glossary of Terms Used in Legal Research (West Publishing)
Wex Legal Dictionary and Encyclopedia (Cornell’s Legal Information Institute)