interrogatory

1 of 2

noun

in·​ter·​rog·​a·​to·​ry ˌin-tə-ˈrä-gə-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce interrogatory (audio)
plural interrogatories
: a formal question or inquiry
especially : a written question required to be answered under direction of a court

interrogatory

2 of 2

adjective

Examples of interrogatory in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
This might come in the form of a request for production of documents or things, a request for admissions, interrogatories or even a notice to take your deposition. Virginia Hammerle, Dallas News, 10 May 2023 The objection also said Alabama law restricts questions, or interrogatories, to 40 without the court’s permission to go beyond that limit. Paul Gattis | Pgattis@al.com, al, 20 Apr. 2023 In the district court, Clinton was ordered to respond to interrogatories. Andrew C. McCarthy, National Review, 14 Apr. 2020 Along those lines, various persons in Williamson’s orbit could be forced to answer questions in depositions and through interrogatories. Michael McCann, SI.com, 22 Aug. 2019 During it, Brown and Taylor would be required to answer questions under oath, either in depositions (in-person answers) or interrogatories (written answers). Michael McCann, SI.com, 11 Sep. 2019 The result threw a spotlight on special interrogatories, a common feature in civil trials, according to veteran lawyers. Dan Hinkel, chicagotribune.com, 29 June 2018 This vetting will include interrogatories, a public hearing and an evidentiary hearing. Allan Vought, The Aegis, 28 June 2018 If strong enough to survive those first interrogatories, they will be interviewed by an asylum officer who will run a rough interview that emphasizes preventing fraud and often mistakenly determines that a person shouldn't receive asylum. Luis Mancheno, CBS News, 8 June 2018
Adjective
Highly personable and ingratiating but with a tough core, Walters withstood critiques about the softness of her interrogatory style with celebrities and sometimes major political figures as well. Carmel Dagan, Variety, 30 Dec. 2022 His interrogatory path in our reciprocal dance was not the typical name-rank-serial-number route my heart would have read as a plain vanilla checklist from a communications textbook. Chip Bell, Forbes, 12 July 2022 Minister Chiang gave the orderly a long, interrogatory look. Elliot Ackerman, Wired, 2 Mar. 2021 But Thornton had also figured out that his character’s power came not from fiercely interrogatory tactics but from apparent empathy and even his warm heart. Chris Jones, chicagotribune.com, 21 Dec. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'interrogatory.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

Noun

1515, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1576, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of interrogatory was in 1515

Dictionary Entries Near interrogatory

Cite this Entry

“Interrogatory.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/interrogatory. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

interrogatory

adjective
in·​ter·​rog·​a·​to·​ry
ˌint-ə-ˈräg-ə-ˌtōr-ē,
-ˌtȯr-
: containing, expressing, or implying a question

Legal Definition

interrogatory

noun
in·​ter·​rog·​a·​to·​ry ˌin-tə-ˈrä-gə-ˌtōr-ē How to pronounce interrogatory (audio)
plural interrogatories
: a written question required by law to be answered under the direction of a court
especially : a written question directed by one party to another regarding information that is within the scope of discovery see also general verdict and special verdict at verdict, special interrogatory

Note: Interrogatories are widely used as a discovery device in civil procedure and also have limited use in criminal proceedings. An interrogatory may be objected to and does not have to be answered if the court determines that it is excessive or burdensome. An interrogatory may also be submitted by a judge to a jury when the court asks for a general verdict and wants to know the basis of the decision, or when the court requires the jury to return a special verdict.

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