What is Parole?

Legal Definition
Parole is the provisional release of a prisoner who agrees to certain conditions prior to the completion of the maximum sentence period, originating from the French parole ("voice", "spoken words"). The term became associated during the Middle Ages with the release of prisoners who gave their word.

This differs greatly from amnesty or commutation of sentence in that parolees are still considered to be serving their sentences, and may be returned to prison if they violate the conditions of their parole. Conditions of parole often include things such as obeying the law, refraining from drug and alcohol use, avoiding contact with the parolee's victims, obtaining employment, and maintaining required contacts with a parole officer. A specific type of parole is medical parole or compassionate release which is the release of prisoners on medical or humanitarian grounds. Some justice systems, such as the United States federal system, place defendants on supervised release after serving their entire prison sentence; this is not the same as parole. In Colorado, parole is an additional punishment after the entire prison sentence is served, called "mandatory parole", per §18-1.3-401(1)(a)(V)(B).
-- Wikipedia
Legal Definition
International law. The agreement of persons who have been taken by an enemy that they will not again take up arms against those who captured them, either for a limited time, or during the continuance of the war. Vattel, liv. 3, c. 8, §151.
-- Bouviers Law Dictionary
Legal Definition
In military law. A promise given by a prisoner of war, when he bas leave to depart from custody, that he will return at the time appointed, unless discharged. Webster. An engagement by a prisoner of war, upon being set at liberty, that he will not again take up arms against the government by whose forces he was captured, either for a limited period or while hostilities continue.
-- Black's Law Dictionary
Legal Definition
A convict's release from prison on certain conditions to be observed by him, and a suspension of his sentence during the liberty thus granted. See 3 Okl. Crim. Rep. 350, 26 L. R. A. (N. S.) 110, 106 Pac. 549.
-- Ballentine's Law Dictionary