oyer and terminer

(redirected from Oyer et terminer)
Also found in: Legal.

oy·er and ter·mi·ner

 (oi′ər; tûr′mə-nər)
n. Law
1. A court of general criminal jurisdiction in some states of the United States.
a. A commission empowering a judge in Great Britain to hear and rule on a criminal case at the assizes.
b. The court in Great Britain where such a hearing is held.

[Middle English, partial translation of Anglo-Norman oyer et terminer, to hear and determine : oyer, to hear + terminer, to determine.]

oyer and terminer

1. (Law) English law (formerly) a commission issued to judges to try cases on assize. It became obsolete with the abolition of assizes and the setting up of crown courts in 1972
2. (Historical Terms) the court in which such a hearing was held
3. (Law) (in the US) a court exercising higher criminal jurisdiction
[C15: from Anglo-Norman, from oyer to hear + terminer to judge]

o•yer and ter•mi•ner

(ˈoʊ yər ən ˈtɜr mə nər, ˈɔɪ ər)

1. (in some U.S. states) any of various higher criminal courts.
a. a British commission or writ directing the holding of a court to try offenses.
b. the court itself.
[1375–1425; late Middle English < Anglo-French: literally, to hear and determine]
References in periodicals archive ?
Although Schwarz largely punts the job of interpreting the information in his documentary collection, preferring to direct readers to relevant monographs previously published by Douglas Egerton, James Sidbury, and Michael Nicholls, some of Schwarz's footnotes do contain important content on such relevant matters as benefit of clergy, courts of oyer et terminer, and the precise location of certain places named in the official record.