Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “clause”

See all translations

clause

noun [C] uk   /klɔːz/ us    /klɑːz/

clause noun [C] (LEGAL DOCUMENT)

law a particular part of a written legal document, for example a law passed by Parliament or a contract (= an agreement): They have added/deleted/amended a clause in the contract which says the company can make people redundant for economic reasons. Clause 4 of the constitution is thought to be the most important section.
More examples

clause noun [C] (GRAMMAR)

B2 specialized language a group of words, consisting of a subject and a finite form of a verb: In the sentence "I can't cook very well but I make qu ite good pancakes", both "I can't cook very well" and "I make good pancakes" are main/independent clauses (= they are of equal importance and could each exist as a separate sentence). In the sentence "I'll get you some stamps if I go to town", "if I go to town" is a subordinate/dependent clause (= it is not as important as the main part of the sentence and could not exist as a separate sentence).
More examples
Grammar
(Definition of clause from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of clause?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “clause” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

ellipsis

a situation in which words are left out of a sentence but the sentence can still be understood

Word of the Day

Euphemisms (Words used to Avoid Offending People)

by Kate Woodford,
March 04, 2015
​​​ We recently looked at the language that we use to describe lies and lying. One area of lying that we considered was ‘being slightly dishonest, or not speaking the complete truth’. One reason for not speaking the complete truth is to avoid saying something that might upset or offend people. Words and

Read More 

snapchat verb

March 02, 2015
to send someone a message using the photomessaging application Snapchat We used to have a thing until he got a girlfriend. now

Read More