Illegitimacy

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Illegitimacy Meaning and Definition in Dictionary

Definitions from Wordnet 2.0


  • unlawfulness by virtue of not being authorized by or in accordance with law
  • the status of being born to parents who were not married

Definitions from Wiktionary


  • the status of being born to parents who were not married ,
  • unlawfulness by virtue of not being authorized by or in accordance with law

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Illegitimacy Meaning and Definition in Wikipedia


The word Legitimacy means something which is good and right. Why the thing is right may be because it follows the law, a religion says it is right, or maybe it is naturally right. People may not agree about what is right, and because of this they may not agree what "Legitimacy" is and what is "Legitimate". There are two different uses of the word "Legitimacy"

When a government is accepted by many people it is considered to have "Legitimacy". In the past, some different reasons were used to make people accept a government. In the Zhou Dynasty of old China the rulers said they were given the "Mandate of Heaven" which means that the ruler was chosen by God. This is similar to the divine right of kings doctrine in Europe, where kings would say they were chosen by God.

In the time of The Enlightenment, John Locke wrote that Legitimacy came from the agreement of the people under the government. In Western thinking, this has become the accepted meaning. Not all the people must agree, only most of the people. Most of the people must agree that the government is the best way to make laws and rule, if the government has Legitimacy.



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