law and lore - the difference

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Law means a rule or a collection of rules. Colloquially, the law it means the police.
Lore is knowledge or tradition passed from generation to generation.
Lores are part of a bird's head.

There is often confusion over the words law and lore.


Law is most commonly seen as a noun, but, like most nouns, it can be used as an adjective. It has several meanings:

A rule or collection of rules imposed by authority.

  • That's against the law.
  • He studied Law.
    (Like Mathematics and Science, Law is written with a capital letter when it refers to the subject for study.)
  • The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly. (Abraham Lincoln)
A universal principle that describes something's fundamental nature.

  • The laws of physics.
  • Kofi Annan told the international conference: "It has been said that arguing against globalization is like arguing against the laws of gravity."
  • Human judges can show mercy. But against the laws of nature, there is no appeal. (Authur C Clarke)
    (The first half of this quote alludes to law meaning a rule imposed by authority, but the second half refers to law meaning something's fundamental characteristics.)
The police (colloquial)

  • Leggit. It's the law.


The word lore is a noun. It is most commonly seen in the word folklore. Lore has several meanings:

Tradition or knowledge passed from generation to generation (often by word of mouth through legend or anecdote).

  • Vampire bats and good-looking, sophisticated vampires have only recently become part of the traditional vampire lore.
  • According to folklore, if it rains on St Swithin's Day, it will rain for the next 40 days.
  • (Folklore = traditional beliefs, legends and customs)
Lores: The surface on each side of a bird's head (used for other animals too; e.g. snakes).

yellow-lored Amazon parrot
Select the correct version:



There is no such word as folklaw. It's folklore.

List of easily confused words

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