from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To quote as an authority or example.
  • transitive v. To mention or bring forward as support, illustration, or proof: cited several instances of insubordinate behavior.
  • transitive v. To commend officially for meritorious action in military service.
  • transitive v. To honor formally.
  • transitive v. To summon before a court of law.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To quote; to repeat, as a passage from a book, or the words of another.
  • v. To list the source(s) from which one took information, words or literary or verbal context.
  • v. To summon officially or authoritatively to appear in court

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To call upon officially or authoritatively to appear, as before a court; to summon.
  • transitive v. To urge; to enjoin.
  • transitive v. To quote; to repeat, as a passage from a book, or the words of another.
  • transitive v. To refer to or specify, as for support, proof, illustration, or confirmation.
  • transitive v. To bespeak; to indicate.
  • transitive v. To notify of a proceeding in court.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To call upon officially or authoritatively to appear; summon before a person or tribunal; give legal or official notice to appear in court to answer or defend.
  • To call to action; rouse; urge; incite.
  • To quote; name or repeat, as a passage from a book or the words of another.
  • To refer to in support, proof, or confirmation: as, to cite an authority or a precedent in proof of a point in law.
  • To mention; recount; recite.
  • To bespeak; argue; evidence; denote.
  • Synonyms and Recite, Adduce, etc. See adduce and quote.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a short note recognizing a source of information or of a quoted passage
  • v. commend
  • v. repeat a passage from
  • v. advance evidence for
  • v. refer to for illustration or proof
  • v. call in an official matter, such as to attend court
  • v. refer to
  • v. make reference to


Middle English citen, to summon, from Old French citer, from Latin citāre; see kei-2 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French citer, from Latin citare ("to cause to move, excite, summon"), frequentive of ciēre ("to rouse, excite, call"). (Wiktionary)


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