2. A short statement that expresses a general truth or principle: There is an old dictum which states that blood is thicker than water.
3. A thing that is generally said; a current saying; a maxim: The elderly woman had a dictum that stated that, "The best thing about the future is that it comes only one day at a time."
4. In Law, an expression of an opinion by a judge on a matter of law, which is not the formal resolution or determination of a court: The judge repeated his legal brief as if it were the dictum of a higher court.
5. Etymology: derived from the Latin word dicere, "to say".
Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.
"When an obiter dictum is stated by a judge, it can be an opinion that may have some influence over the jury and the lawyers present; so, it is an opinion based on experience and wisdom but which has not been thoroughly researched, is not entered into a judgment, and so it has no legal force."