Quarrel of the Terms in Compiling the Constitution: The Motifs for Using Equivocal & Paradoxical Terms

Document Type : Original Article


Assistant professor in public law, university of Tehran, Qom, Iran



The legislators primarily aim to compile clear and unambiguous rules; however, it is in some cases inevitable to use equivocal and paradoxical terms. The reasons for such an occurrence are galore. In the present study, this subject was investigated in the Iranian Constitution since prior to Constitutional Revolution to the present time, and some examples were brought. In each case, the basis of the equivocality and representation in constitution was separately investigated and the motives were discussed. One of the aspects of using such terms indicated the lack of unanimity among the working groups over using the clear and unambiguous terms insofar as no conclusion has been drawn in socio-political discussions, and no unanimity over the conflicts has been reached. Therefore, ambiguity of the socio-political level has entered into a legal level and has affected the legal texts. In other words, members of working political groups haven't still come upon an agreed solution for the controversial issues, and choosing each way solely will satisfy one of the parties, resulting in an imbalance of powers in favor of one party. Hence, solving such a controversy is achieved through delaying precise expression of the will by each party and postponing the decision-making over the issue, all of which is earned by using equivocal phrases and silencing the issue; discussing such issues will result in the futility of the Constitution. The article ultimately recommended that jurists take into account the principle of silence and equivocality in constitution,


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