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Definition of CURIA
a: a division of the ancient Roman people comprising several gentes of a tribe
b: the place of assembly of one of these divisions
a: the court of a medieval king
b: a court of justice
often capitalized: the body of congregations, tribunals, and offices through which the pope governs the Roman Catholic Church
— cu·ri·al\ˈkyu̇r-ē-əl, ˈku̇r-\adjective
Origin of CURIA
Latin, perhaps from co- + vir man — more at virile
First Known Use: 1600
In medieval Europe, a court, or a group of persons who attended a ruler at a given time for social, political, or judicial purposes. The ruler and curia made policy decisions (as on war, treaties, finances, church relations), and under a powerful ruler the curia often became active as a court of law. Indeed, curiae became so loaded down with judicial work that they were gradually forced to delegate it to special groups of judges. In England the Curia Regis (King's Court) began at the time of the Norman Conquest (1066) and lasted to about the end of the 13th century. It was the germ from which the higher courts of law, the Privy Council, and the cabinet were to spring. See alsoRoman Curia.