Law Dictionary – Legal Words ( B )

Baconian Of or pertaining to Lord Bacon or his system of philosophy.

bacterium A microbe.

badger To pester.

baffle To foil or frustrate.

bailiff An officer of court having custody of prisoners under arraignment.

baize A single-colored napped woolen fabric used for table-covers, curtains, etc.

bale A large package prepared for transportation or storage.

baleful Malignant.

ballad Any popular narrative poem, often with epic subject and usually in lyric form.

balsam A medical preparation, aromatic and oily, used for healing.

banal Commonplace.

barcarole A boat-song of Venetian gondoliers.

barograph An instrument that registers graphically and continuously the atmospheric pressure.

barometer An instrument for indicating the atmospheric pressure per unit of surface.

barring prep. Apart from.

baritone Having a register higher than bass and lower than tenor.

bask To make warm by genial heat.

bass Low in tone or compass.

baste To cover with melted fat, gravy, while cooking.

baton An official staff borne either as a weapon or as an emblem of authority or privilege.

battalion A body of infantry composed of two or more companies, forming a part of a regiment.

batten A narrow strip of wood.

batter A thick liquid mixture of two or more materials beaten together, to be used in cookery.

bauble A trinket.

bawl To proclaim by outcry.

beatify To make supremely happy.

beatitude Any state of great happiness.

beau An escort or lover.

becalm To make quiet.

beck To give a signal to, by nod or gesture.

bedaub To smear over, as with something oily or sticky.

bedeck To cover with ornament.

bedlam Madhouse.

befog To confuse.

befriend To be a friend to, especially when in need.

beget To produce by sexual generation.

begrudge To envy one of the possession of.

belate To delay past the proper hour.

belay To make fast, as a rope, by winding round a cleat.

belie To misrepresent.

believe To accept as true on the testimony or authority of others.

belittle To disparage.

belle A woman who is a center of attraction because of her beauty, accomplishments, etc.

bellicose Warlike.

belligerent Manifesting a warlike spirit.

bemoan To lament

benediction a solemn invocation of the divine blessing.

benefactor A doer of kindly and charitable acts.

benefice A church office endowed with funds or property for the maintenance of divine service.

beneficent Characterized by charity and kindness.

beneficial Helpful.

beneficiary One who is lawfully entitled to the profits and proceeds of an estate or property.

benefit Helpful result.

benevolence Any act of kindness or well-doing.

benevolent Loving others and actively desirous of their well-being.

benign Good and kind of heart.

benignant Benevolent in feeling, character, or aspect.

benignity Kindness of feeling, disposition, or manner.

benison Blessing.

bequeath To give by will.

bereave To make desolate with loneliness and grief.

berth A bunk or bed in a vessel, sleeping-car, etc.

beseech To implore.

beset To attack on all sides.

besmear To smear over, as with any oily or sticky substance.

bestial Animal.

bestrew To sprinkle or cover with things strewn.

bestride To get or sit upon astride, as a horse.

bethink To remind oneself.

betide To happen to or befall.

betimes In good season or time.

betroth To engage to marry.

betrothal Engagement to marry.

bevel Any inclination of two surfaces other than 90 degrees.

bewilder To confuse the perceptions or judgment of.

bibliomania The passion for collecting books.

bibliography A list of the words of an author, or the literature bearing on a particular subject.

bibliophile One who loves books.

bibulous Fond of drinking.

bide To await.

biennial A plant that produces leaves and roots the first year and flowers and fruit the second.

bier A horizontal framework with two handles at each end for carrying a corpse to the grave.

bigamist One who has two spouses at the same time.

bigamy The crime of marrying any other person while having a legal spouse living.

bight A slightly receding bay between headlands, formed by a long curve of a coast-line.

bilateral Two-sided.

bilingual Speaking two languages.

biograph A bibliographical sketch or notice.

biography A written account of one’s life, actions, and character.

biology The science of life or living organisms.

biped An animal having two feet.

birthright A privilege or possession into which one is born.

bitterness Acridity, as to the taste.

blasé Sated with pleasure.

blaspheme To indulge in profane oaths.

blatant Noisily or offensively loud or clamorous.

blaze A vivid glowing flame.

blazon To make widely or generally known.

bleak Desolate.

blemish A mark that mars beauty.

blithe Joyous.

blithesome Cheerful.

blockade The shutting up of a town, a frontier, or a line of coast by hostile forces.

boatswain A subordinate officer of a vessel, who has general charge of the rigging, anchors, etc.

bodice A women’s ornamental corset-shaped laced waist.

bodily Corporeal.

boisterous Unchecked merriment or animal spirits.

bole The trunk or body of a tree.

bolero A Spanish dance, illustrative of the passion of love, accompanied by caste nets and singing.

boll A round pod or seed-capsule, as a flax or cotton.

bolster To support, as something wrong.

bomb A hollow projectile containing an explosive material.

bombard To assail with any missile or with abusive speech.

bombardier A person who has charge of mortars, bombs, and shells.

bombast Inflated or extravagant language, especially on unimportant subjects.

boorish Rude.

bore To weary by tediousness or dullness.

borough An incorporated village or town.

bosom The breast or the upper front of the thorax of a human being, especially of a woman.

botanical Connected with the study or cultivation of plants.

botanize To study plant-life.

botany The science that treats of plants.

bountiful Showing abundance.

Bowdlerize To expurgate in editing (a literary composition) by omitting words or passages.

bowler In cricket, the player who delivers the ball.

boycott To place the products or merchandise of under a ban.

brae Hillside.

braggart A vain boaster.

brandish To wave, shake, or flourish triumphantly or defiantly, as a sword or spear.

bravado An aggressive display of boldness.

bravo interj. Well done.

bray A loud harsh sound, as the cry of an ass or the blast of a horn.

braze To make of or ornament with brass.

brazier An open pan or basin for holding live coals.

breach The violation of official duty, lawful right, or a legal obligation.

breaker One who trains horses, dogs, etc.

breech The buttocks.

brethren pl. Members of a brotherhood, gild, profession, association, or the like.

brevity Shortness of duration.

bric-a-brac Objects of curiosity or for decoration.

bridle The head-harness of a horse consisting of a head-stall, a bit, and the reins.

brigade A body of troops consisting of two or more regiments.

brigadier General officer who commands a brigade, ranking between a colonel and a major-general.

brigand One who lives by robbery and plunder.

brimstone Sulfur.

brine Water saturated with salt.

bristle One of the coarse, stiff hairs of swine: used in brush-making, etc.

Britannia The United Kingdom of Great Britain.

Briticism A word, idiom, or phrase characteristic of Great Britain or the British.

brittle Fragile.

broach To mention, for the first time.

broadcast Disseminated far and wide.

brogan A coarse, heavy shoe.

brogue Any dialectic pronunciation of English, especially that of the Irish people.

brokerage The business of making sales and purchases for a commission; a broker.

bromine A dark reddish-brown, non-metallic liquid element with a suffocating odor.

bronchitis Inflammation of the bronchial tubes.

bronchus Either of the two subdivisions of the trachea conveying air into the lungs.

brooch An article of jewelry fastened by a hinged pin and hook on the underside.

brotherhood Spiritual or social fellowship or solidarity.

browbeat To overwhelm, or attempt to do so, by stern, haughty, or rude address or manner.

brusque Somewhat rough or rude in manner or speech.

buffoon A clown.

buffoonery Low drollery, coarse jokes, etc.

bulbous Of, or pertaining to, or like a bulb.

bullock An ox.

bulrush Any one of various tall rush-like plants growing in damp ground or water.

bulwark Anything that gives security or defense.

bumper A cup or glass filled to the brim, especially one to be drunk as a toast or health.

bumptious Full of offensive and aggressive self-conceit.

bungle To execute clumsily.

buoyancy Power or tendency to float on or in a liquid or gas.

buoyant Having the power or tendency to float or keep afloat.

bureau A chest of drawers for clothing, etc.

bureaucracy Government by departments of men transacting particular branches of public business.

burgess In colonial times, a member of the lower house of the legislature of Maryland or Virginia.

burgher An inhabitant, citizen or freeman of a borough burgh, or corporate town.

burnish To make brilliant or shining.

bursar A treasurer.

bustle To hurry.

butt To strike with or as with the head, or horns.

butte A conspicuous hill, low mountain, or natural turret, generally isolated.

buttress Any support or prop.

by-law A rule or law adopted by an association, a corporation, or the like.

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