treason

/tree"zeuhn/, n.
1. the offense of acting to overthrow one's government or to harm or kill its sovereign.
2. a violation of allegiance to one's sovereign or to one's state.
3. the betrayal of a trust or confidence; breach of faith; treachery.
[1175-1225; ME tre(i)so(u)n < AF; OF traïson < L tradition- (s. of traditio) a handing over, betrayal. See TRADITION]
Syn. 1. TREASON, SEDITION mean disloyalty or treachery to one's country or its government. TREASON is any attempt to overthrow the government or impair the well-being of a state to which one owes allegiance; the crime of giving aid or comfort to the enemies of one's government. SEDITION is any act, writing, speech, etc., directed unlawfully against state authority, the government, or constitution, or calculated to bring it into contempt or to incite others to hostility, ill will or disaffection; it does not amount to treason and therefore is not a capital offense. 2. See disloyalty.

* * *

Offense of attempting to overthrow the government of one's country or of assisting its enemies in war.

In the U.S., the framers of the Constitution defined treason narrowly
as the levying of war against the U.S. or the giving of aid and comfort to its enemies
in order to lessen the possibility that those in power might falsely or loosely charge their political opponents with treason. See also sedition.

* * *

crime
      the crime of betraying a nation or a sovereign by acts considered dangerous to security. In English law, treason includes the levying of war against the government and the giving of aid and comfort to the monarch's enemies. It is also treason to violate the monarch's consort, eldest unmarried daughter, or heir's wife.

      In the United States, treason was defined restrictively by the framers of the Constitution. History had taught them that men in power might falsely or loosely charge treason against their opponents; therefore, they denied Congress the authority to enlarge or reshape the offense. Treason against the United States “shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them aid and comfort.”

      The Japanese law of treason places special emphasis on acts designed to frustrate the country's alliances with other powers. This is mainly a consequence of Japan's renunciation of war after World War II. A Japanese citizen may thus be punished for advocating war against another nation. See also sedition.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Synonyms:
(to a sovereign or a Government), , ,


Look at other dictionaries:

  • treason — trea·son / trēz ən/ n [Anglo French treison crime of violence against a person to whom allegiance is owed, literally, betrayal, from Old French traïson, from traïr to betray, from Latin tradere to hand over, surrender]: the offense of attempting… …   Law dictionary

  • Treason — Trea son, n. [OE. tresun, treisun, traisoun, OF. tra[ i]son, F. trahison, L. traditio a giving up, a delivering up, fr. tradere to give up, betray. See {Traitor}, and cf. {Tradition}.] 1. The offense of attempting to overthrow the government of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • treason — (n.) early 13c., from Anglo Fr. treson, from O.Fr. traison (11c.; Mod.Fr. trahison), from L. traditionem (nom. traditio) a handing over, delivery, surrender (see TRADITION (Cf. tradition)). Old French form influenced by the verb trair betray. In… …   Etymology dictionary

  • treason — (also high treason) ► NOUN ▪ the crime of betraying one s country, especially by attempting to kill or overthrow the sovereign or government. DERIVATIVES treasonable adjective treasonous adjective. ORIGIN Old French treisoun, from Latin tradere… …   English terms dictionary

  • treason — *sedition Analogous words: revolution, revolt, rebellion, uprising, insurrection: betrayal, deceiving or deception, double crossing (see corresponding verbs at DECEIVE): overthrowing or overthrow, subverting or subversion (see corresponding verbs …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • treason — [n] disloyalty breach of faith, crime, deceit, deceitfulness, deception, disaffection, dishonesty, duplicity, faithlessness, lèsemajesté, mutiny, perfidy, revolt, revolutionary, sedition, seditious act, seditiousness, subversion, traitorousness,… …   New thesaurus

  • treason — [trē′zən] n. [ME treison < OFr traïson < L traditio < pp. of tradere, to give or deliver over or up < trans , TRANS + dare, to give: see DATE1] 1. Now Rare betrayal of trust or faith; treachery 2. violation of the allegiance owed to… …   English World dictionary

  • Treason — In law, treason is the crime that covers some of the more serious acts of disloyalty to one s sovereign or nation. Historically, treason also covered the murder of specific social superiors, such as the murder of a husband by his wife (treason… …   Wikipedia

  • treason — A breach of allegiance to one s government, usually committed through levying war against such government or by giving aid or comfort to the enemy. The offense of attempting by overt acts to overthrow the government of the state to which the… …   Black's law dictionary

  • treason — n. 1) to commit; plot treason 2) high treason 3) an act of treason 4) treason to + inf. (it is treason to sell military information to a foreign power) * * * [ triːz(ə)n] plot treason an act of treason hightreason to commit treason to + inf. (it… …   Combinatory dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.