Find accurate definitions of over 5,000 Catholic terms and phrases (including abbreviations). Based on Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.
The law of retaliation, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. This could understood literally and also legally. Literally it means demanding strict retribution, with no mercy shown. Legally it means inflicting punishment in kind, i.e., to suffer a penalty similar to the crime.