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[kraws-ig-zam-in, kros-] /ˈkrɔs ɪgˈzæm ɪn, ˈkrɒs-/
verb (used with object), cross-examined, cross-examining.
to examine by questions intended to check a previous examination; examine closely or minutely.
Law. to examine (a witness called by the opposing side), as for the purpose of discrediting the witness's testimony.
Compare direct-examine.
Origin of cross-examine
First recorded in 1655-65
Related forms
cross-examination, noun
cross-examiner, noun
uncross-examined, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for cross-examination
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But no occasion arose for either defiance or cross-examination.

    The Woman-Haters Joseph C. Lincoln
  • Really, Sir Terence, if my word is not sufficient, I refuse to submit to cross-examination.

    The Snare Rafael Sabatini
  • Alden Lytton read it, and then recommenced his cross-examination of the minister.

    Victor's Triumph Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth
  • I own that I did not feel easy under this cross-examination.

    Sir Jasper Carew Charles James Lever
  • They'd have it out on the cross-examination, at all events, if not on the direct.

    Barrington Charles James Lever
British Dictionary definitions for cross-examination


verb (transitive)
(law) to examine (a witness for the opposing side), as in attempting to discredit his testimony Compare examine-in-chief
to examine closely or relentlessly
Derived Forms
cross-examination, noun
cross-examiner, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for cross-examination

also cross examination; 1827, "an examination of a witness by the other side, to 'check' the effects of previous questioning," from cross (adj.) + examination. Related: Cross-examine (1660s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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