norm. 1. A model or standard accepted (voluntarily or involuntarily) by society or other large group, against which society judges someone or something. • An example of a norm is the standard for right or wrong behavior. 2. An actual or set standard determined by the typical or most frequent behavior of a group.

basic norm.In the legal theory of Hans Kelsen, the law from which all the other laws in a society derive. • Kelsen’s “pure theory of law” maintains that laws are norms. Therefore, a society’s legal system is made up of its norms, and each legal norm derives its validity from other legal norms. Ultimately, the validity of all laws is tested against the “basic norm,” which may be as simple as the concept that all pronouncements of the monarch are to be obeyed. Or it may be an elaborate system of lawmaking, such as a constitution. — Also termed grundnorm. See PURE THEORY.

[Blacks Law 8th]