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1 : a solemn declaration of opinion and usually of disagreement: as
a : a solemn written declaration by a notary public or U.S. consul on behalf of the holder of an instrument (as a note) announcing dishonor and declaring the liability of all parties to the instrument for any loss or damage arising from such action
: the action of making or causing to be made such a declaration with due service of notice of dishonor
b : a declaration made by the master of a ship before a notary, consul, or other authorized officer upon arrival in port after a disaster declaring that any loss was not the fault of the crew but due to the disaster
c : a declaration made by a party esp. before or while paying a tax or performing a demanded act by which the declarer asserts that the justice or legality of the tax or act is disputed and that compliance is not voluntary
2 : the act of objecting or a gesture of disapproval
: a usually organized public demonstration of disapproval
: with noted objections (as of insufficient payment) and claims [cashed a check under protest]
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.