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Definition of "federal" []

  • Of, relating to, or being a form of government in which a union of states recognizes the sovereignty of a central authority while retaining certain residual powers of government. (adjective)
  • Of or constituting a form of government in which sovereign power is divided between a central authority and a number of constituent political units. (adjective)
  • Of or relating to the central government of a federation as distinct from the governments of its member units. (adjective)
  • Favorable to or advocating federation: The senator's federal leanings were well known. (adjective)
  • Relating to or formed by a treaty or compact between constituent political units. (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "federal" in a sentence
  • "I mean, you've robbed thirty-one banks in twelve states, escaped from federal lockups _and _federal prisons -- and all without using violence of any kind."
  • "Esq. in Milton, and remarked to him, that I was afraid the legislature would be federal, to which the said Thompson replied, that he was afraid it would _not be federal_, or that he began to be afraid there would not be _a federal_ house."
  • ""The big lessons after Katrina is we all have to work as a team," said Fugate, whose agency employed the term "federal family," instead of federal government, in news releases related to storm preparations."