In contracts. The lawful delegation of power by one person to another. In the English law relating to public administration, an authority is a body having jurisdiction in certain matters of a public nature. In governmental law. Legal power; a right to command or to act; the right and power of public officers to require obedience to their orders lawfully issued in the scope of their public duties. Authority to execute a deed must be given by deed. Com. Dig. “Attorney,” C, 5; 4 Term, 313; 7 Term, 207; 1 Holt, 141; Blood v. Goodrich, 9 Wend. (N. Y.) 68, 75, 24 Am. Dec. 121; Banorgee v. Hovey, 5 Mass. 11, 4 Am. Dec. 17; Cooper v. Rankin, 5 Bin. (Pa.) 613.