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[fee-aht, -at; fahy-uh t, -at] /ˈfi ɑt, -æt; ˈfaɪ ət, -æt/
an authoritative decree, sanction, or order:
a royal fiat.
a fixed form of words containing the word fiat, by which a person in authority gives sanction, or authorization.
an arbitrary decree or pronouncement, especially by a person or group of persons having absolute authority to enforce it:
The king ruled by fiat.
Origin of fiat
1625-35; < Latin: let it be done, 3rd singular present subjunctive of fierī to become

fiat justitia, ruat caelum

[fee-aht yoo s-tee-tee-ah roo-aht kahy-loo m; English fee-aht juhs-tish-ee-uh roo-at see-luh m, fahy-uh t] /ˈfi ɑt yʊsˈti tiˌɑ ˈru ɑt ˈkaɪ lʊm; English ˈfi ɑt dʒʌsˈtɪʃ i ə ˈru æt ˈsi ləm, ˈfaɪ ət/
let there be justice though the heavens fall.

fiat lux

[fee-aht loo ks; English fee-aht luhks, fahy-uh t] /ˈfi ɑt ˈlʊks; English ˈfi ɑt ˈlʌks, ˈfaɪ ət/
let there be light. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for fiat
  • Industries that depend on government fiat for their livelihood are living on borrowed time.
  • If only our hominid ancestor's descendants could learn to use fiat currency, think of the evolution that might yet await.
  • Every major economy in the world now uses fiat currency which are bits of colored paper.
  • fiat has gone so far as to give drivers extremely detailed report cards of how to improve their fuel economy.
  • Consider what fiat money, backed by no gold standard or collateral of any kind, really means.
  • All of this flies in the face of nature and could only be emplaced by fiat.
  • The epoch of fiat currency hasn't worked out too well.
  • The total debt and interest owing on it is less than the total of both fiat and debt money available in the world.
  • fiat can do same if they wish to overcome the brand image here.
  • Hence, inaction on the part of the researchers out there has resulted in administrative fiat.
British Dictionary definitions for fiat


/ˈfaɪət; -æt/
official sanction; authoritative permission
an arbitrary order or decree
(mainly literary) any command, decision, or act of will that brings something about
Word Origin
C17: from Latin, literally: let it be done, from fierī to become
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
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Word Origin and History for fiat

"authoritative sanction," 1630s, from Latin fiat "let it be done" (also used in the opening of Medieval Latin proclamations and commands), third person singular present subjunctive of fieri, used as passive of facere "to make, do" (see factitious). Also sometimes a reference to fiat lux "let there be light" in the Book of Genesis.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Related Abbreviations for fiat


Italian Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino (Italian Automobile Factory of Turin)
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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