a1 University of Iceland
It is widely accepted that vagueness in law calls for a specific interpretation of the law—interpretation that changes the meaning of the law and makes it more precise. According to this view, vagueness causes gaps in the law, and the role of legal interpretation in the case of vagueness is to fill such gaps. I argue that this view is mistaken and defend the thesis that vagueness in law calls only for an application of the law to the case at hand, leaving the meaning of the law intact.
* The ideas in this paper were first developed at the conference on Law, Language, and Interpretation at the University of Akureyri, Iceland, Spring 2007, and then at the conference on Language and Law at the Center for the Study of Mind in Nature, University of Oslo, Norway, June 2008. I am grateful to the participants at these conferences for helpful discussions. I also thank Matti Eklund for helpful comments. The paper is greatly improved due to comments by two anonymous referees for this journal.