Definitions

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

  • n. A plea; an entreaty.
  • n. Law Advocacy of causes in court.
  • n. Law A formal statement, generally written, propounding the cause of action or the defense in a case.
  • n. Law The consecutive statements, allegations, and counterallegations made by plaintiff and defendant, or prosecutor and accused, in a legal proceeding.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A document filed in a lawsuit, particularly a document initiating litigation or responding to the initiation of litigation.
  • v. Present participle of plead.
  • adj. Of or pertaining to that which pleads.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of advocating, defending, or supporting, a cause by arguments.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of advocating any cause; specifically, the act or practice of advocating clients' causes in courts of law.
  • n. In law: The document (or in some inferior courts an oral statement) formally setting forth the cause of action or the defense of a party.
  • n. The formal allegation on the record of that which is to be relied on as the support of the party's case in evidence
  • n. The rules and usages of framing such documents, and of the sufficiency of their contents : the art of drawing pleadings
  • n. plural The written allegations made in alternate series by the plaintiff and the defendant of their respective grounds of action and defense, terminating in propositions distinctly affirmed on one side and denied on the other, called the issue. Heard. In a more limited sense, only those allegations or altercations which are subsequent to the count or declaration
  • n. The science of pleading, which, until the English Common-law Procedure Act, in 1852, constituted a distinct branch of the law, having the merit of developing the points in controversy with great precision. Its strictness and subtlety were frequently a subject of complaint, and one of the objects of the act was to relax and simplify its rules
  • n. In popular use, the specious but unsound or unfair argumentation of one whose aim is victory rather than truth.

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

  • n. (law) a statement in legal and logical form stating something on behalf of a party to a legal proceeding
  • adj. begging

Etymologies

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