Philadelphia lawyer definition by Webster's New World
Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Informal a clever, shrewd, or tricky lawyer, esp. one skilled in taking advantage of legal technicalities
Origin: so named in reference to Andrew Hamilton, of Philadelphia, who obtained acquittal (1735) of J. P. Zenger from libel charges
Philadelphia lawyer definition by American Heritage Dictionary
nounThe American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
A shrewd attorney adept at the discovery and manipulation of legal technicalities.
Origin: After Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
philadelphia lawyer - Phrases/Idioms
A shrewd attorney, adept at dealing with legal technicalities, as in It would take a Philadelphia lawyer to get him off. This expression dates from the late 1700s and, as lexicographer Richard H. Thornton observed: “Why members of the Philadelphia bar should be credited with superhuman sagacity has never been satisfactorily explained.”