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

    Same as Jail.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    A prison for temporary confinement; a jail; a place for the confinement of offenders against the law. There is said to be a distinction between "gaol" and "prison ;" the former being a place for temporary or provisional confinement, or for the punishment of the lighter offenses and misdemeanors, while the latter is a place for permanent or long-continued confinement, or for the punishment of graver crimes. In modem usage, this distinction is commonly taken between the words "gaol" and "penitentiary," (or state's prison,) but the name "prison" is indiscriminately applied to either.
    —Gaol liberties, gaol limits. A district around a gaol, defined by limits, within which prisoners are allowed to go at large on giving security to return. It is considered a part of the gaol.
    —Gaoler. The master or keeper of a prison; one who has the custody of a place where prisoners are confined.