Quiz: Remember the definition of mal de mer?

breach of the peace

noun, Law.
a violation of the public peace, as by a riot, disturbance, etc.
1665-75 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for breach of the peace
  • In taking possession, a secured party may proceed without judicial process if this can be done without breach of the peace.
  • Finally, the officer determines if the comment was of a threatening nature and a breach of the peace.
  • Thankfully, defendant's words did not incite an actual breach of the peace.
  • Regrettably, in this case, those frustrations escalated into arrests for breach of the peace and this lawsuit.
  • Distinguish between disorderly conduct and breach of the peace.
British Dictionary definitions for breach of the peace

breach of the peace

(law) an offence against public order causing an unnecessary disturbance of the peace
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for breach of the peace

any of three distinct types of legal offense. In its broadest sense, the term is synonymous with crime itself and means an indictable offense. In another and more common sense, however, the phrase includes only those crimes that are punishable primarily because of their disrupting effect upon the peace and security of the community. Among these offenses are affray, unlawful assembly, riot, forcible entry and detainer, disturbance of public assemblies, keeping a disorderly house, and malicious mischief. In its third and narrowest meaning, the phrase is confined to willful conduct that does not fall within the definition of any other specific crime but that unreasonably disrupts the public tranquillity or has a strong tendency to cause a disturbance. In common law, and under many statutes, such a disturbance or breach of peace is punishable as a misdemeanour.

Learn more about breach of the peace with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for breach of the peace

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for breach

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for breach of the peace