Definitions from Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition and Ballentine's Law Dictionary as are available for each term in each dictionary.
  • Ballentine's Law Dictionary

    The public; the state; the body politic; England during the Interregnum, 16491660.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    The public or common weal or welfare. This cannot be regarded as a technical term of public law, though often used in political science. It generally designates, when so employed, a republican frame of government,—one in which the welfare and rights of the entire mass of people are the main consideration, rather than the privlleges of a class or the will of a monarch ; or it may designate the body of citizens living under such a government. Sometimes it may denote the corporate entity or the government, of a jural society (or state) possessing powers of selfgovernment in respect of its immediate concerns, but forming an integral part of a larger government, (or nation.) In this latter sense, it Is the official title of several of the United States, (as Pennsylvanla and Massachusetts,) and would be appropriate to them all. In the former sense, the word was used to designate the English government during the protectorate of Cromwell. See Government; Nation; State. (State v. Lambert, 44 W. Va. 308, 28 S. E. 930.)