The basis or essence of a grievance; the issue upon which a particular controversy turns.
The gravamen of a criminal charge or complaint is the material part of the charge.
In English ecclesiastical law, the term gravamen referred to a grievance of which the clergy complained before the bishops in convocation.
"Gravamen." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 21, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/law/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/gravamen
"Gravamen." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Retrieved April 21, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/law/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/gravamen
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"gravamen." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 21, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/gravamen
"gravamen." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Retrieved April 21, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/gravamen