Something legitimate is the real deal — according to the law.

Legitimate has other variations of meaning. To legitimate something is to make it legal, either by passing a law or publicly recognizing it as in accordance with the law. A government can be legitimized by being invited to world talks, or a movie by winning a prestigious award.

Definitions of legitimate
  1. adjective
    in accordance with recognized or accepted standards or principles
    legitimate advertising practices”
    constituted, established
    brought about or set up or accepted; especially long established
  2. adjective
    based on known statements or events or conditions
    synonyms: logical
    well grounded in logic or truth or having legal force
  3. verb
    show or affirm to be just and legitimate
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    type of:
    justify, vindicate
    show to be right by providing justification or proof
  4. adjective
    authorized, sanctioned by, or in accordance with law
    “a legitimate government”
    synonyms: lawful, licit
    established by or founded upon law or official or accepted rules
  5. adjective
    of marriages and offspring; recognized as lawful
    authorised, authorized
    endowed with authority
    established by or founded upon law or official or accepted rules
    born in wedlock; enjoying full filial rights
    left-handed, morganatic
    (of marriages) of a marriage between one of royal or noble birth and one of lower rank; valid but with the understanding that the rank of the inferior remains unchanged and offspring do not succeed to titles or property of the superior
    lawful, rightful, true
    having a legally established claim
    well grounded in logic or truth or having legal force
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    of marriages and offspring; not recognized as lawful
    unauthorised, unauthorized
    not endowed with authority
    prohibited by law or by official or accepted rules
    conceived in adultery
    base, baseborn
    bastardly, misbegot, misbegotten, spurious
    born out of wedlock
    not having a known or legally responsible father
    (of marriages) illicit or informal
    unlawful, wrongful
    having no legally established claim
    having no cogency or legal force
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  6. verb
    make legal
    synonyms: decriminalise, decriminalize, legalise, legalize, legitimatise, legitimatize, legitimise, legitimize
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    criminalise, criminalize, illegalise, illegalize, outlaw
    declare illegal; outlaw
    monetise, monetize
    give legal value to or establish as the legal tender of a country
    type of:
    allow, countenance, let, permit
    consent to, give permission
  7. verb
    make (an illegitimate child) legitimate; declare the legitimacy of (someone)
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    type of:
    alter, change, modify
    cause to change; make different; cause a transformation
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