Definition of decree noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//dɪˈkriː//
    ; NAmE NAmE//dɪˈkriː//
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  1. 1[countable, uncountable] an official order from a ruler or a government that becomes the law to issue/sign a decree a presidential/royal decree a leader who rules by decree (= not in a democratic way)
  2. 2[countable] a decision that is made in court
  3. Word OriginMiddle English (denoting an order issued by an ecclesiastical council to settle a point of doctrine or discipline): from Old French decre, decret, from Latin decretum ‘something decided’, from decernere ‘decide’.Extra examples He has been governing by emergency decree under the provisions of the constitution. In an emergency decree, the government banned all rallies. Local inspectors helped enforce presidential decrees. The general will rule by decree until a general election. The government had the power to legislate by emergency decree independently of Parliament. The president issued a decree prohibiting trade unions. a decree on property rights She was granted a decree nisi in a five-minute hearing at the divorce court. The general ruled by decree. Thousands of demonstrators defied the decree and gathered in the square.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: decree