Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To appeal earnestly; beg.
  • intransitive verb To offer reasons for or against something; argue earnestly.
  • intransitive verb To provide an argument or appeal.
  • intransitive verb Law To respond to a criminal charge.
  • intransitive verb To assert as defense, vindication, or excuse; claim as a plea.
  • intransitive verb To specify (a cause of action or defense).
  • intransitive verb To set forth in a pleading.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • In law, to present an answer to the declaration or complaint of a plaintiff, or the charge of a prosecutor; deny the plaintiff's declaration or complaint, or allege facts relied on as showing that he ought not to recover in the suit.
  • To urge a plea, an argument, or an excuse for or against a claim, or in support, justification, extenuation, etc.; endeavor to persuade by argument or supplication; urge reasons or use argument: as, to plead with a judge for a criminal or in his favor; to plead with a wrongdoer, urging him to reform.
  • To sue; make application; enter a plea or an argument.
  • To argue or prosecute causes; contend.
  • To discuss, defend, and attempt to maintain by arguments or reasons offered to the person or tribunal that has the power of determining; argue: as, to plead a cause before a court or jury.
  • To urge or allege in extenuation, justification, or defense; adduce in proof, support, or vindication: as, to plead poverty as an excuse for stealing.
  • To set forth in a plea or defense; interpose a plea of: as, to plead a statute of limitations.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To discuss, defend, and attempt to maintain by arguments or reasons presented to a tribunal or person having uthority to determine; to argue at the bar.
  • transitive verb To allege or cite in a legal plea or defense, or for repelling a demand in law; to answer to an indictment
  • transitive verb To allege or adduce in proof, support, or vendication; to offer in excuse.
  • transitive verb To argue in support of a claim, or in defense against the claim of another; to urge reasons for or against a thing; to attempt to persuade one by argument or supplication; to speak by way of persuasion
  • transitive verb (Law) To present an answer, by allegation of fact, to the declaration of a plaintiff; to deny the plaintiff's declaration and demand, or to allege facts which show that ought not to recover in the suit; in a less strict sense, to make an allegation of fact in a cause; to carry on the allegations of the respective parties in a cause; to carry on a suit or plea.
  • transitive verb obsolete To contend; to struggle.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb To present an argument, especially in a legal case.
  • verb To beg, beseech, or implore.

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

  • verb appeal or request earnestly
  • verb make an allegation in an action or other legal proceeding, especially answer the previous pleading of the other party by denying facts therein stated or by alleging new facts
  • verb offer as an excuse or plea
  • verb enter a plea, as in courts of law

Etymologies

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

[Middle English pleden, plaiden, from Old French plaidier, from Medieval Latin placitāre, to appeal to the law, from Late Latin placitum, decree, opinion; see plea.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English pleden, plaiden, from Old French plaider ("to plead, offer a plea"), from plait, from Medieval Latin placitum ("a decree, sentence, suit, plea, etc.", in Classical Latin, "an opinion, determination, prescription, order; literally, that which is pleasing, pleasure"), neuter of placitus, past participle of placere ("to please").

Examples

Comments

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  • To plead with: to beg something of someone

    May 26, 2013