ver·dict | \ ˈvər-(ˌ)dikt \

Definition of verdict 

1 : the finding or decision of a jury on the matter submitted to it in trial

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Examples of verdict in a Sentence

The verdict was not guilty. The jury reached a guilty verdict. Do you want my verdict on the meal? The critic's verdict about the show was positive.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Experts say the verdict is still out on whether Accolade can systematically reduce health-care costs. Bob Fernandez,, "Accolade, with 500 employees in Plymouth Meeting, seeks to boldly cut health costs for big companies," 12 July 2018 The verdict This was our least-favorite burger of the Seattle Top Four (with an important caveat — see the Dick’s entry). Bethany Jean Clement, The Seattle Times, "Seattle’s top 4 burger spots — ranked by Seattle Times critics," 10 July 2018 The offense requires a court appearance, and a guilty verdict carries a mandatory fishing license suspension and civil penalties. Christina Lords, idahostatesman, "A fellow angler told this man he couldn't poach a sturgeon. He did anyway and was cited by IDFG," 28 June 2018 However, the verdict is a bitter pill for the four people who raised the alarm about Macchiarini’s fraud. Gretchen Vogel, Science | AAAS, "Macchiarini guilty of misconduct, but whistleblowers share blame, new Karolinska Institute verdict finds," 26 June 2018 Eating Animals, a pointed new documentary based on Jonathan Safran Foer’s 2009 book of the same name, delivers a firm verdict. Laura Regensdorf, Vogue, "This Natalie Portman–Backed Documentary Will Make You Seriously Consider Going Vegetarian," 16 June 2018 For Donavan and Zucker, the verdict is more absolute: Although his descendants vehemently deny it, citing his passionate Catholicism, Asperger was simply a Nazi, working with other Nazis, in a system that killed children. Kate Tuttle,, "Hans Asperger's complex Nazi history," 15 June 2018 And the verdict is clear: Bryan Furman’s lemon-pepper [wet] chicken checks all the boxes: juicy on the inside, crisp on the outside, flavored with a swoon-worthy balance of salt and pepper and sweet, sweet lemony butter. Hilary Cadigan, Bon Appetit, "Heaven Is an Entire Lemon-Pepper Chicken Doused in Honey Butter," 14 June 2018 Also awaiting the verdict with bated breath is Comcast (cmcsa, +0.22%), which is champing at the bit to make an offer to buy 21st Century Fox (fox, +0.74%), edging out Disney’s $52 billion proposed buy-out. Hallie Detrick, Fortune, "The AT&T-Time Warner Merger Ruling Is Expected Tuesday. Here's What's at Stake," 11 June 2018

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

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First Known Use of verdict

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for verdict

Middle English verdit, verdict, borrowed from Anglo-French veirdit "announcement, finding, judicial decision," from veir "true" (going back to Latin vērus) + dit "statement, judgment" (going back to Latin dictum), after Medieval Latin vērumdictum, vēredictum — more at very entry 2, dictum

alteration (partly conformed to Medieval Latin veredictum) of Anglo-French veirdit statement, finding, verdict, from Old French veir true (from Latin verus) + dit saying, from Latin dictum

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Last Updated

8 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for verdict

The first known use of verdict was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for verdict



English Language Learners Definition of verdict

law : the decision made by a jury in a trial

: a judgment or opinion about something


ver·dict | \ ˈvər-dikt \

Kids Definition of verdict

1 : the decision reached by a jury

2 : judgment sense 2, opinion What's your verdict on his proposal?


ver·dict | \ ˈvər-dikt \

Legal Definition of verdict 

1 : the usually unanimous finding or decision of a jury on one or more matters (as counts of an indictment or complaint) submitted to it in trial that ordinarily in civil actions is for the plaintiff or for the defendant and in criminal actions is guilty or not guilty — compare judgment sense 1a

compromise verdict

: a verdict produced not by sincere unanimous agreement on guilt or liability but by an improper surrender of individual convictions specifically : an impermissible verdict by a jury that is unable to agree on liability and so compromises on an award of damages that is less than what it should be if the plaintiff has a right of recovery free from any doubts

directed verdict

1 : a verdict granted by the court when the party with the burden of proof has failed to present sufficient evidence of a genuine issue of material fact that must be submitted to a jury for its resolution : judgment as a matter of law at judgment 1a the order of the court granting a motion for a directed verdict is effective without any assent of the juryMassachusetts Rules of Civil Procedure Rule 50(a) — see also judgment notwithstanding the verdict at judgment sense 1a

Note: Under Rule 50 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, judgment as a matter of law has replaced directed verdict in federal practice.

2 : a verdict of acquittal ordered by the court on the ground that the evidence is not sufficient to support a conviction when viewed in the light most favorable to the prosecution : judgment of acquittal at judgment 1a

Note: Under Rule 29 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, the term judgment of acquittal has replaced directed verdict in federal practice.

directed verdict of acquittal

: directed verdict in this entry

excessive verdict

: a verdict that awards damages grossly disproportionate to injury and shocks the court's sense of justice and that may be remedied by a lessening of damages or a new trial — see also remittitur

general verdict

: a verdict that is either for the plaintiff or for the defendant and is often returned with answers to interrogatories on questions of fact where there exists a conflict between the general verdict and the interrogatories, the trial court may determine that the answers to the interrogatories prevailBerk v. Matthews, 559 N.E.2d 1301 (1990) — see also interrogatory, special interrogatory — compare special verdict in this entry

instructed verdict

: directed verdict in this entry

partial verdict

1 : a verdict in which a jury does not find all of the defendants in a trial to be guilty

2a : a verdict that finds a defendant guilty on some counts and not guilty on others

b : a verdict in which a jury is unable to reach or has not yet reached agreement on all of the offenses under consideration

Note: The acceptance of partial verdicts before a jury is finished with deliberations may interfere with the deliberative process; having a jury achieve unanimity on a higher charge first discourages compromise verdicts on lesser included offenses. In some jurisdictions it has been considered proper to afford the jury the opportunity to render a partial verdict of acquittal on a higher charge to avoid declaring a mistrial because of a hopeless deadlock only on a lesser included offense; such a verdict would prevent double jeopardy on the higher charge.

quotient verdict \ˈkwō-shənt- \

: a usually impermissible verdict that is based on a numerical average of the amounts written down by jurors (as percentages of fault in a comparative negligence case) specifically : a verdict that awards damages based on the average of the sums written down by the jurors under an agreement that all will be bound by the average figure quotient verdicts are invalid and constitute grounds for a mistrial Faverty v. McDonald's Restaurants of Oregon, Inc., 892 P.2d 703 (1995)

repugnant verdict

: an impermissible verdict that contradicts itself since the defendant is convicted and acquitted of different crimes having identical elements in the same transaction used chiefly in New York

responsive verdict \ri-ˈspän-siv- \

: a verdict that responds to the indictment and accords with statutorily prescribed findings for a particular charge that include guilty, not guilty, and guilty of a prescribed lesser included offense used in Louisiana

Note: A responsive verdict of guilty on a lesser included offense must be supported by the evidence.

special verdict

: a verdict that consists of specific findings of fact (as of liability) in response to interrogatories, that often includes determinations of damages, and that is used by the court in the formation of a judgment — compare general verdict in this entry

2 : an amount awarded in a verdict reduced the verdict

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occurring twice a year or every two years

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