Legislature, representative assembly empowered to enact, revise, or repeal the laws or statutes of a community. The earliest modern legislatures were the British Parliament and the French States-General, which were forerunners of the contemporary bicameral system of upper and lower houses. In the United States the 2 chambers are the Senate and the House of Representatives, which together are called the Congress. In most bicameral systems both chambers must approve a bill before it becomes law. Under a parliamentary system, like Britain's or Canada's, the prime minister, who heads the government, remains in power only as long as his or her party retains a majority in the main legislative chamber. Under the U.S. system, the president's stay in office is independent of the majority party in the legislature.
21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia - Lange, Dorothea to Lilac