• WordNet 3.6
    • n loophole a small hole in a fortified wall; for observation or discharging weapons
    • n loophole an ambiguity (especially one in the text of a law or contract) that makes it possible to evade a difficulty or obligation
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Loophole A hole or aperture that gives a passage, or the means of escape or evasion.
    • Loophole (Mil) A small opening, as in the walls of fortification, or in the bulkhead of a ship, through which small arms or other weapons may be discharged at an enemy.
    • Loophole An amibiguity or unintended omission in a law, rule, regulation, or contract which allows a party to circumvent the intent of the text and avoid its obligations under certain circumstances. -- used usually in a negative sense; -- distinguished from escape clause in that the latter usually is included to deliberately allow evasion of obligation under certain specified and foreseen circumstances; as, a loophole in the law big enough to drive a truck through.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n loophole A small aperture, narrow toward the outside and splayed within, in the walls of a fortification or of any similar structure, through which small-arms may be fired at an enemy, or observations may be taken.
    • n loophole An opening into or out of anything; a hole or aperture that gives a passage or the means of escape: often used figuratively, and especially of an underhand or unfair method of escape or evasion.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Loophole lōōp′hōl a small hole in a wall, &c., through which small-arms may be fired: a means of escape
    • ***


  • Jeremy P. Johnson
    Jeremy P. Johnson
    “Drugs are reality's legal loopholes.”
  • Edgar Shoaff
    Edgar Shoaff
    “The two leading recipes for success are building a better mousetrap and finding a bigger loophole.”


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O. Fr. loup.


In literature:

Loopholes were arranged for concentrated defence in any one direction.
"The Triumph of John Kars" by Ridgwell Cullum
But her eyes were loopholes through which anguish escaped.
"The Emigrant Trail" by Geraldine Bonner
Possibly we don't stand up for it; or we may have our loophole, by which we may let ourselves out and drag it in.
"Girlhood and Womanhood" by Sarah Tytler
My idea is to crawl up through the cornfield until we are within shooting distance, and then to open fire at the loopholes.
"With Lee in Virginia" by G. A. Henty
Any loophole for escape from, the alternative in which they have thrust themselves they would welcome.
"Diary of the Besieged Resident in Paris" by Henry Labouchère
He stood, indifferently gazing through the loophole, until Roger's companion fell asleep.
"By Right of Conquest" by G. A. Henty
I'll pitch you out of the loophole, so that you'll have no wish to come back again.
"The Hero of Esthonia and Other Studies in the Romantic Literature of That Country" by William Forsell Kirby
There was one loophole left to comfort her.
"North of Fifty-Three" by Bertrand W. Sinclair
I drew back from my loophole and held out my hand to a woman for a loaded musket.
"The Literary World Seventh Reader" by Various
Ought he not to re-write his proposal and word it so as to leave himself a loophole?
"The Mayor of Troy" by Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

In poetry:

The spirit was silent; but he took
Mortar and stone to build a wall;
He left no loophole great or small
Through which my straining eyes might look:
"Shut Out" by Christina Georgina Rossetti
In one of the hospital rooms was stationed Henry Hook,
And every inch a hero he did look,
Standing at his loophole he watched the Zulus come,
All shouting, and yelling, and at a quick run.
"The Hero of Rorke's Drift" by William Topaz McGonagall

In news:

Investigative writer looks at corporations' legal loopholes.
One state lawmaker says it is, and she's asking the Governor to plug the loophole.
Dorothy Day, tax loopholes, fracking and autism.
The senior acquisition official suggested both loopholes could be discarded.
Legislation aims to close drunk driving loophole .
CMS officials wouldn't discuss this issue on the record, but they said they know there are loopholes in the system.
13 WTHR IndianapolisState lawmakers respond to Indiana's moped loophole .
State lawmakers respond to Indiana's moped loophole .
"These guys ever only close loopholes when they get caught.".
Loophole frees mentally ill youth offenders.
Loophole Lets Toxic Oil Water Flow Over Native American Land.
Attorney General Looks To Close Loophole In Drug Law.
He proposed a one year extension on unemployment insurance, closing business tax loopholes, and raising taxes on the rich.
Travel hackers are committed to beating the points system by maximizing their rewards while spending the least amount possible, finding loopholes and exchanging strategies to travel the world on a budget.
Both Murray and McGinn, likely rivals in the 2013 Seattle mayor 's race, raised not only the need for action to close the gun show loophole, but noted that the Legislature has sharply cut mental health services in recent years.

In science:

Of course, this ”loophole” is not helpful when we are dealing with a multiplicity of systems: for each time-asymmetric solution there is another time-asymmetric solution that is the temporal mirror image of the first one.
The cosmological origin of time-asymmetry
There is another, very different, loophole in the classical global analysis which is posed by quantum effects.
The Classical Singularity Theorems and their Quantum Loopholes
We explain a subtle loophole in the relevant consideration of hep-th/9710142 and re-derive the F 4 term from harmonic supergraphs.
Low-energy dynamics in N = 2 super QED: Two-loop approximation
Unfortunately, the consideration of contains a subtle loophole.
Low-energy dynamics in N = 2 super QED: Two-loop approximation
Unfortunately, there is a subtle loophole in the above consideration.
Low-energy dynamics in N = 2 super QED: Two-loop approximation