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

  • n. Law A warrant for arrest.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A writ or process commanding the officer to take the body of the person named in it, that is, to arrest him; -- also called writ of capias.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In law, a writ in a civil action directing that the person of the defendant be taken into custody.


Middle English, from Medieval Latin capiās, from Latin, second person sing. present subjunctive of capere, to seize (from the first word of the writ).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin capiās ("you should seize, you are to seize"), from capiō ("to seize"). (Wiktionary)


  • [17] Of these renderings the subjoined may be taken as favorable specimens: -- "Breve originale, original sinne; capias, a catch to a sad tune; alias capias, another to the same (sad tune); habeas corpus, a trooper; capias ad satisfaciend., a hangman: latitat, bo-peep; nisi prius, first come first served; demurrer, hum and haw; scandal. magnat., down with the Lords."

    A Book About Lawyers

  • 'capias' in case he should not obey the second summons.

    Memoirs of Casanova — Volume 01: Childhood

  • They take a pride to prank up themselves, to make young men. enamoured, — [5850] captare viros et spernere capias, to dote on them, and to run mad for their sakes,

    Anatomy of Melancholy

  • Poetarum numina, benigne lector, oro te ne me male capias.

    Anatomy of Melancholy

  • If a non-driving, non-insurance-having, broke bitch has a capias out on her and a concerned citizen knows that this loudmouthed trick is going to be at a public place like Norwood Community Television, what should happen to her when she shows up?

    ATBWT: Running For Your Life...

  • Do you ever notice that every time somebody is murdered, both teh victim and the perp if known just happen to be out awaiting trial, or a capias has been issued for them, etc.

    Things I'm Working On...

  • There's been a capias issued in that matter, and the capias provides for no bond.

    CNN Transcript Mar 20, 2005

  • There is a statutory bond amount on that capias of $905.

    CNN Transcript Mar 20, 2005

  • There has been a capias issued in that matter, and the capias provides for no bond.

    CNN Transcript Mar 20, 2005

  • And the second charge that you're here on today, sir, involves a violation of probation, and the capias was issued on that matter, as well.

    CNN Transcript Mar 20, 2005


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