1

summons

noun sum·mons \ ˈsə-mənz \
Updated on: 1 Dec 2017

Definition of summons

plural summonses
1 : the act of summoning; especially : a call by authority to appear at a place named or to attend to a duty
2 : a warning or citation to appear in court: such as
a : a written notification to be served on a person as a warning to appear in court at a day specified to answer to the plaintiff
b : a subpoena to appear as a witness
3 : something (such as a call) that summons

Examples of summons in a Sentence

  1. The judge issued a summons.

  2. He received a royal summons.

Recent Examples of summons from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of summons

Middle English somouns, from Anglo-French somonse, from past participle of somondre

summons Synonyms

Synonyms
process, subpoena
Related Words
capias, warrant, writ; ticket

2

summons

verb

Definition of summons

transitive verb
: summon 2

Recent Examples of summons from the Web

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

First Known Use of summons

1683


SUMMONS Defined for English Language Learners

summons

noun

Definition of summons for English Language Learners

  • law : an official order to appear in a court of law

  • : an official order to appear at a particular place


summons

verb

Definition of summons for English Language Learners

  • law : to order (someone) to appear in a court of law


SUMMONS Defined for Kids

summons

noun sum·mons \ ˈsə-mənz \

Definition of summons for Students

plural summonses
1 : the act of calling or sending for
2 : a call by authority to appear at a place named or to attend to some duty
  • a royal summons
3 : a written order to appear in court

Law Dictionary

1

summons

noun sum·mons \ ˈsə-mənz \

legal Definition of summons

plural summonses \-mən-zəz\
: a written notification that one is required to appear in court: as
a : a document in a civil suit that is issued by an authorized judicial officer (as a clerk of court) and delivered to a plaintiff or the plaintiff's attorney for service on the defendant and that notifies the defendant that he or she must appear and defend (as by filing an answer) within a specified time or a default judgment will be rendered for the plaintiff
b : a document that summons a defendant to appear before a court to answer a minor criminal charge and that is issued in lieu of a warrant for arrest by an authorized judicial officer (as a magistrate) upon request of a prosecuting attorney
c : a notification to appear for jury service
d : a notification to appear as a witness — see also john doe summons, service — compare subpoena

2

summons

transitive verb

legal Definition of summons

summonsed \-mənzd\; summonsing \-mən-ziŋ\
: summon; especially : to bring into court by a summons
  • hereby summonsed to serve as a trial juror


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