gravamen definition

  • noun:
    • Law The section of a charge or an accusation that weighs in at many substantially against the accused.
    • The grievance reported of; the significant cause of the action; also, in general, the bottom or essence of a complaint.
    • The grievance reported of; the considerable reason behind the action; also, as a whole, the bottom or essence of a complaint. Bouvier.
    • the duty or chief weight; that part of an accusation which weighs most heavily against the accused; the substantial reason behind an action at law; floor or burden of complaint generally speaking.
    • inside Ch. of Eng., a representation by the lower home of Convocation towards upper of a current grievance, disorder, or trouble influencing the chapel.

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