Business, Legal & Accounting Glossary

Definition: State


What is the dictionary definition of State?

Dictionary Definition

the territory occupied by one of the constituent administrative districts of a nation

Full Definition of State

A state is a society of men established for the maintenance of peace and justice by way of force. In the American case, the US Supreme Court has defined State as a body of free persons, united for the common benefit to enjoy peaceably what is their own and to do justice to others. State is an association of human beings established for the attainment of certain goals by certain means.

The end of every organized political association is to provide defence against external enemies and to maintain peaceful and orderly relations within the association itself. The sovereign, according to Hobbes, carries two swords, – the sword of was and that of justice. The essential functions, therefore, of a modern political State are was and administration of justice.

Every organized political society which performs these two functions is a state, and none is such which does not perform them. These are the two methods by which a State fulfils its appointed purpose of establishing right and justice by physical force. It is thus a combination of right as well as might.

Cite Term

To help you cite our definitions in your bibliography, here is the proper citation layout for the three major formatting styles, with all of the relevant information filled in.

Page URL
Modern Language Association (MLA):
State. Payroll & Accounting Heaven Ltd. November 30, 2021
Chicago Manual of Style (CMS):
State. Payroll & Accounting Heaven Ltd. (accessed: November 30, 2021).
American Psychological Association (APA):
State. Retrieved November 30, 2021, from website:

Definition Sources

Definitions for State are sourced/syndicated and enhanced from:

  • A Dictionary of Economics (Oxford Quick Reference)
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Accounting
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Business & Management

This glossary post was last updated: 1st April, 2020 | 4 Views.