What does federal mean?

Definitions for federal
ˈfɛd ər əlfed·er·al

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word federal.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. Federal, Federal soldier, Union soldiernoun

    a member of the Union Army during the American Civil War

  2. Federal, Fed, federal officialadjective

    any federal law-enforcement officer

  3. federaladjective

    national; especially in reference to the government of the United States as distinct from that of its member units

    "the Federal Bureau of Investigation"; "federal courts"; "the federal highway program"; "federal property"

  4. federaladjective

    of or relating to the central government of a federation

    "a federal district is one set aside as the seat of the national government"

  5. Union, Federaladjective

    being of or having to do with the northern United States and those loyal to the Union during the American Civil War

    "Union soldiers"; "Federal forces"; "a Federal infantryman"

  6. federaladjective

    characterized by or constituting a form of government in which power is divided between one central and several regional authorities

    "a federal system like that of the United States"; "federal governments often evolved out of confederations"


  1. federalnoun

    A law-enforcement official of the FBI; short for federal agent.

  2. federaladjective

    Pertaining to a league or treaty; derived from an agreement or covenant between parties, especially between nations.

  3. federaladjective

    Pertaining to the national government level, as opposed to state, provincial, county, city, or town.

  4. Etymology: From foedus.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Federaladjective

    Relating to a league or contract.

    Etymology: from fœdus, Latin.

    It is a federal rite betwixt God and us, as eating and drinking, both among the Jews and Heathens, was wont to be. Henry Hammond, Fundamentals.

    The Romans compelled them, contrary to all federal right and justice, both to part with Sardinia, their lawful territory, and also to pay them for the future a double tribute. Nehemiah Grew.


  1. federal

    Federal refers to a system of government in which powers and functions are divided between a central government and individual states or provinces. It can also pertain to anything related to this system of government, such as federal laws, federal courts, or federal agencies.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Federaladjective

    pertaining to a league or treaty; derived from an agreement or covenant between parties, especially between nations; constituted by a compact between parties, usually governments or their representatives

  2. Federaladjective

    composed of states or districts which retain only a subordinate and limited sovereignty, as the Union of the United States, or the Sonderbund of Switzerland

  3. Federaladjective

    consisting or pertaining to such a government; as, the Federal Constitution; a Federal officer

  4. Federaladjective

    friendly or devoted to such a government; as, the Federal party. see Federalist

  5. Federalnoun

    see Federalist

  6. Etymology: [L. foedus league, treaty, compact; akin to fides faith: cf. F. fdral. see Faith.]


  1. Federal

    Federal is the debut album by American rapper E-40, released November 10, 1993 on Sick Wid It Records. It peaked at number 80 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. Jive records reissued Federal in 1995 with three tracks missing.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Federal

    fed′ėr-al, adj. pertaining to or consisting of a treaty or covenant: confederated, founded upon mutual agreement: of a union or government in which several states, while independent in home affairs, combine for national or general purposes, as in the United States (in the American Civil War, Federal was the name applied to the states of the North which defended the Union against the Confederate separatists of the South).—n. a supporter of federation: a Unionist soldier in the American Civil War.—n. Fed′eracy.—v.t. Fed′eralise.—ns. Fed′eralism, the principles or cause maintained by federalists; Fed′eralist, a supporter of a federal constitution or union; Fed′erary (Shak.), a confederate.—adj. Fed′erāte, united by league: confederated.—n. Federā′tion, the act of uniting in league: a federal union.—adj. Fed′erātive, united in league.—Federal (or Covenant) theology, that first worked out by Cocceius (1603-69), based on the idea of two covenants between God and man—of Works and of Grace (see Covenant). [Fr. fédéral—L. fœdus, fœderis, a treaty, akin to fidĕre, to trust.]

Rap Dictionary

  1. federaladjective

    Refering to the federal government. "The reasons are several, most of the federal" -- Public Enemy (Black steel in the hour of chaos).

  2. federaladjective

    Something of exceptional quality or of an extreme nature. Used throughout E-40 tapes, probably Bay Area in origin.

  3. federaladjective

    Going federal: rising up in the game.

  4. federaladjective

    To "make a federal case of" something means to make a big deal out of it, usually when it's not worth it.

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'federal' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #2632

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'federal' in Written Corpus Frequency: #4754

  3. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'federal' in Adjectives Frequency: #354

How to pronounce federal?

How to say federal in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of federal in Chaldean Numerology is: 1

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of federal in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of federal in a Sentence

  1. Ron DeSantis:

    There's been talk about potentially people advocating at the federal level, imposing compulsory masks on kids, we're not doing that in Florida, OK ? We need our kids to breath. We need our kids to be able to be kids.

  2. Christopher Wray:

    From the FBI's perspective, from a law enforcement perspective, we try to be very careful to focus on violence, threats of violence and associated federal criminal activity, there may be certain instances where language becomes part of a conspiracy, for example, and there are instances where there are other federal statutes which may be violated, but again, those are complicated questions which I would refer to the lawyers over at the Justice Department.

  3. Don Forgeron:

    That's a problem. That means (money to pay for) damages beyond what the fund can cover will need to be found elsewhere, resulting either in cuts to other programs or an increase in the federal deficit, climate change ... has moved from future threat to present danger.

  4. Paul Pelosi:

    ICE is limited by what it can see in its files, and the person's circumstances may have changed since their last interaction with the federal government, when you're dealing with our electronic systems, ICE is seeing the fingerprints of an alien arrested by local law enforcement. But a face-to-face interview can confirm a lot of things. And the truth is, with any law enforcement situation, you never know what you're going to uncover during an interview.

  5. Ken Paxton:

    Our lawsuit is about the rule of law, not the wisdom of any particular immigration policy, texas has argued for years that the federal executive branch lacks the power to unilaterally grant unlawfully present aliens lawful presence and work authorization.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for federal

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"federal." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 3 Mar. 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/federal>.

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    having or resembling a stinger or barb
    • A. aculeate
    • B. occlusive
    • C. epidemic
    • D. ambidextrous

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