nisi prius


nisi prius
\\-ˈprīəs\ noun
Etymology: Middle English, from Medieval Latin, literally, unless before (words introducing a clause in the writ)
1.
a. : a cause involving issues of fact that being begun in the courts of Westminster was appointed to be tried there in an Easter or Michaelmas term by a jury from the county wherein the cause of action arose unless before the day appointed the judges of assize came into the county in question and there tried the cause
b. : an issue of fact triable at the assizes
2.
a.
(1) : a writ commanding the sheriff to provide a jury at the Court of Westminster on a day certain unless the judges of assize previously come to the county from which the jury is to be returned
(2) : the clause in this writ introduced by the words nisi prius
(3) : the authority or commission conferred by this clause on the judges of assize
b. : an action tried or to be tried in an English court under such a writ
c.
(1) : the trial of civil causes by the judges of assize
(2) : the trial of issues of fact in civil causes or other such court business (as the trial of causes before the judges of the King's Bench Division in London)
3.
a. : a court of record in the U.S., Great Britain, and other English-speaking countries that tries an issue of fact before a jury and a single judge
b. : the proceedings in such a court — compare in banc at banc

Useful english dictionary. 2012.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Nisi prius — is a historical term in English law. In the nineteenth century, it came to be used to denote generally all legal actions tried before judges of the King s Bench Division[1] and in the early twentieth century for actions tried at assize by a judge …   Wikipedia

  • nisi prius — nisi pri·us / prī əs, prē u̇s/ n [Medieval Latin, unless before, the words introducing a clause in an English writ commanding a sheriff to provide a jury at the Court of Westminster on a certain day unless the judges of assize previously come to… …   Law dictionary

  • nisi prius — nisi prius, adj. /nuy suy pruy euhs, nee see pree euhs/, Law. 1. Also called nisi prius court. a trial court for the hearing of civil cases before a judge and jury. 2. Brit. Law. a. a writ commanding a sheriff of a county to summon a jury and… …   Universalium

  • Nisi prius — Nisi Ni si, conj. [L.] Unless; if not; used mostly in law. [1913 Webster] Note: In legal proceedings, this word is used to indicate that any order, etc., shall take effect at a given time, unless before that time the order, etc., in modified, or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • nisi prius — [prī′əs] n. [L, unless before: used orig. in a writ directing a sheriff to summon a jury to Westminster on a certain date “unless before” that date the trial had been held in his own county] any of various courts in which a cause of action may be …   English World dictionary

  • nisi prius — /naysay prayas/ The nisi prius courts are such as are held for the trial of issues of fact before a jury and one presiding judge. In America the phrase was formerly used to denote the forum (whatever may be its statutory name) in which the cause… …   Black's law dictionary

  • Nisi prius — Lit. unless previously . A writ to the *sheriff instructing him to provide a jury at the court of Westminster on a set day, unless the assize judges came to the *county …   Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases

  • nisi prius — /naɪsaɪ ˈpriəs/ (say nuysuy preeuhs) noun British Law a legal system providing for the trial of civil, and later also criminal cases locally before a single judge and jury, rather than before the central Westminster courts. {Latin: unless before; …   Australian English dictionary

  • nisi prius — Unless before. A trial before a single judge. An English court presided over by commissioners detailed on circuit from London to hold jury trials. In modern terminology, the trial, as distinguished from the appellate court, where both have… …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • Nisi prius-Court — (engl., spr. naißai praiös kōrt), Schwurgericht für Zivilklagen in England, so genannt von dem früher üblichen Befehl an den Sheriff, die ernannten Geschwornen auf einen bestimmten Tag vor den obersten Gerichtshof in London zu laden, wenn nicht… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon


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