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

  • n. Unverified information heard or received from another; rumor.
  • n. Law Evidence based on the reports of others rather than the personal knowledge of a witness and therefore generally not admissible as testimony.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. information that was heard by one person about another
  • n. evidence based on the reports of others rather than on personal knowledge; normally inadmissible because not made under oath
  • n. evidence: an out-of-court statement offered in court for the truth of the matter asserted; normally inadmissible because not subject to cross-examination, unless the hearsay statement falls under one of the many exceptions

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Report; rumor; fame; common talk; something heard from another.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Information communicated by another; report; common talk; rumor; gossip.
  • Of or pertaining to or depending upon hearsay, or the talk of others; told or given at second hand.

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

  • adj. heard through another rather than directly
  • n. gossip (usually a mixture of truth and untruth) passed around by word of mouth


1525–35; from phrase by hear say, translation of Middle French par ouïr dire. (Wiktionary)



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