(||Eq"ui*tes) n. pl [L., pl. of eques a horseman.] (Rom. Antiq.) An order of knights holding a
middle place between the senate and the commonalty; members of the Roman equestrian order.
(Eq"ui*ty) n.; pl. Equities [F. équité, L. aequitas, fr. aequus even, equal. See Equal.]
1. Equality of rights; natural justice or right; the giving, or desiring to give, to each man his due, according
to reason, and the law of God to man; fairness in determination of conflicting claims; impartiality.
Christianity secures both the private interests of men and the public peace, enforcing all justice and
2. (Law) An equitable claim; an equity of redemption; as, an equity to a settlement, or wife's equity,
I consider the wife's equity to be too well settled to be shaken.Kent.
3. (Law) A system of jurisprudence, supplemental to law, properly so called, and complemental of it.
Equity had been gradually shaping itself into a refined science which no human faculties could master
without long and intense application.Macaulay.
Equitable jurisprudence in England and in the United States grew up from the inadequacy of common-
law forms to secure justice in all cases; and this led to distinct courts by which equity was applied in
the way of injunctions, bills of discovery, bills for specified performance, and other processes by which
the merits of a case could be reached more summarily or more effectively than by common-law suits.
By the recent English Judicature Act however, the English judges are bound to give effect, in common-
law suits, to all equitable rights and remedies; and when the rules of equity and of common law, in any
particular case, conflict, the rules of equity are to prevail. In many jurisdictions in the United States,
equity and common law are thus blended; in others distinct equity tribunals are still maintained. See
Equity of redemption (Law), the advantage, allowed to a mortgageor, of a certain or reasonable time
to redeem lands mortgaged, after they have been forfeited at law by the nonpayment of the sum of money
due on the mortgage at the appointed time. Blackstone.
Syn. Right; justice; impartiality; rectitude; fairness; honesty; uprightness. See Justice.
(E*quiv"a*lence) n. [Cf. F. équivalence, LL. aequivalentia.]
1. The condition of being equivalent or equal; equality of worth, value, signification, or force; as, an equivalence
2. Equal power or force; equivalent amount.
3. (Chem.) (a) The quantity of the combining power of an atom, expressed in hydrogen units; the
number of hydrogen atoms can combine with, or be exchanged for; valency. See Valence. (b) The
degree of combining power as determined by relative weight. See Equivalent, n., 2. [R.]
(E*quiv"a*lence), v. t. To be equivalent or equal to; to counterbalance. [R.] Sir T. Browne.
(E*quiv"a*len*cy) n. Same as Equivalence.
(E*quiv"a*lent) a. [L. aequivalens, -entis, p. pr. of aequivalere to have equal power; aequus
equal + valere to be strong, be worth: cf. F. équivalent. See Equal, and Valiant.]