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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Sentence


SEN'TENCE, noun [from Latin sententia, from sentio, to think.]

1. In law, a judgement pronounced by a court or judge upon a criminal; a jdicial decision publicly and officially declared in a criminal prosecution. In technical language, sentence is used only for the declaration of judgement against the convicted of a crime. In civil cases, the decision of the court is called a judgement. In criminal cases, sentence is a judgement pronounced; doom.

2. In language not technical, a determination or decision given, particularly a decision that condemns, ar an unfavorable determination.

Let him be sent out lome of Luther's works, that by them we may pass sentence upon his doctrines. Atterbury.

3. An opinion; judgement concerning a controverted point.

4. A maxim; an axiom; a short saying containing moral instruction.

5. Vindication of one's innocence.

6. In grammar, a period; a number of words containing a complete sense or sentiment, and followed by a full pause. Sentences are simple or compound. A simple sentence consists of one subject and one finite verb; as, 'the Lord reigns.' A compound sentence two or more subjects and finite verbs, as in this verse,

He fills, he bounds, connects and equals all. Pope.

A dark sentence, a saying not easily explained.

SEN'TENCE, verb transitive

1. To pass or pronounce the judgement of a court on; to doom; as, to sentence a convict to death, to transportation, or to imprisonment.

2. To condenm; to doom to punisment.

Nature herself is sentenc'd in your doom. Dryden.