pro·​ceed·​ing prō-ˈsē-diŋ How to pronounce proceeding (audio)
: legal action
a divorce proceeding
proceedings plural : events, happenings
proceedings plural : an official record of things said or done

Examples of proceeding in a Sentence

The secretary kept a record of the proceedings at the meeting. She started the proceedings with a brief welcoming speech. The proceedings of the conference will be published.
Recent Examples on the Web But pretrial proceedings for four men accused of conspiring in the plot are now in their second decade. Carol Rosenberg, New York Times, 18 Nov. 2023 Newman, who oversaw that trial as well, agreed to step down in any further proceedings related to the case, as he could potentially be called as a witness, according to a court order Thursday. Juliette Arcodia, NBC News, 18 Nov. 2023 The University of Virginia will delay the release of an external report on a fatal shooting last year until criminal proceedings in the case are complete, school officials announced Friday. Susan Svrluga, Washington Post, 17 Nov. 2023 Though few patients appeal coverage denials generally, when UnitedHealth members appeal denials based on nH Predict estimates—through internal appeals processes or through the federal Administrative Law Judge proceedings—over 90 percent of the denials are reversed, the lawsuit claims. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, 16 Nov. 2023 As the proceedings began Tuesday afternoon, Libey expressed disappointment that the factions could not agree on a division of the 2023-24 revenue and assets that satisfied both sides. Jon Wilner, San Diego Union-Tribune, 15 Nov. 2023 The criminal proceedings against Alissa, who suffers from schizophrenia, have been repeatedly postponed while he was found to be mentally incompetent to stand trial, however that decision was reversed in October. Jeff Cook, ABC News, 14 Nov. 2023 After months of delays, a jury was finally seated last week, clearing the way for the trial to kick off on Nov. 27 – proceedings that are expected to last well into 2024. Bill Donahue, Billboard, 9 Nov. 2023 Pope Francis, who called for the synod, opened and closed the proceedings with Masses at St. Peter’s’s Basilica and, on many days, joined the conversations, which were held in the Vatican audience hall. Paul Elie, The New Yorker, 8 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'proceeding.' 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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of proceeding was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near proceeding

Cite this Entry

“Proceeding.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


plural : things that happen
kept an eye on the proceedings
: a legal action

Legal Definition


: a particular step or series of steps in the enforcement, adjudication, or administration of rights, remedies, laws, or regulations: as
: an action, hearing, trial, or application before the court
collateral proceeding
: a proceeding that concerns an order, motion, petition, or writ deriving from or sought in relation to another proceeding (as a trial) a collateral proceeding on a motion to have the judge in a pending trial disqualified
especially : one in which a collateral attack on a judgment is made
sought to avoid the effect of the judgment in a collateral proceeding after denial of a direct appeal
core proceeding
: a proceeding (as one instituted by a debtor against a creditor) that is integral to the administration of a bankruptcy estate and so falls under the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy court
non-core proceeding
: a proceeding involving a matter that relates to a bankruptcy case but that does not arise under bankruptcy laws, that could be adjudicated in a state court, and over which a bankruptcy court has limited authority
special proceeding
: a proceeding (as for condemnation or disbarment) that may be commenced independently of a pending action by petition or motion and from which a final order affecting a substantial right may be immediately appealed special proceedings created exclusively by statute where a special procedure is appropriate and warrantedSosebee v. County Line Sch. Dist., 897 S.W.2d 556 (1995)
summary proceeding
: a civil or criminal proceeding in the nature of a trial that is conducted without formalities (as indictment, pleadings, and usually a jury) for the speedy and peremptory disposition of a matter
supplementary proceeding
: a proceeding to discover the assets of a judgment debtor
also : a proceeding that in some way supplements another
: a hearing conducted by an administrative body
: a criminal prosecution or investigation
plural : an official record of things done or said

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