direct examination


Definition of direct examination

: the first examination of a witness by the party calling the witness — compare cross-examination

Examples of direct examination in a Sentence

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DeGuerin continues direct examination before handing Pike over to prosecutors and Portillo’s lawyers for cross-examination this afternoon. Guillermo Contreras, San Antonio Express-News, "“El Presidente” of Bandidos testifies at his trial," 30 Apr. 2018 At one point during the direct examination of McDaniel, the state objected to a line of questioning involving the Bundy letter, and the back-and-forth that followed seemed to expose Robinson’s lack of familiarity with basic courtroom procedures. Leon Neyfakh, Slate Magazine, "James Bailey Is a Liar. Is He a Murderer?," 7 Feb. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'direct examination.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of direct examination

circa 1859, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of direct examination was circa 1859

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direct examination


Legal Definition of direct examination

: the first examination of a witness by the party calling the witness — compare cross-examination, redirect examination

Note: As a general rule, leading questions are not allowed on direct examination, but there are exceptions, as when the witness is shown to be hostile.

Comments on direct examination

What made you want to look up direct examination? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


likely to have or produce good results

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