[sur-shee-uh-rair-ahy, -rair-ee]

Origin of certiorari

1515–25; < Latin: to be informed, certified, literally, made surer, passive infinitive of certiōrāre to inform, verbal derivative of certior, comparative of certus sure (see certain); so called because v. form occurred in the L original
Also called writ of certiorari.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for certiorari

Historical Examples of certiorari

British Dictionary definitions for certiorari


  1. law an order of a superior court directing that a record of proceedings in a lower court be sent up for reviewSee also mandamus, prohibition

Word Origin for certiorari

C15: from legal Latin: to be informed
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

Word Origin and History for certiorari

legal Latin, "to be certified, to be informed or shown," from a word figuring in the opening phrase of such writs from superior to inferior courts seeking the records of a case. Passive present infinitive of certorare "to certify, inform," from certior, comp. of certus "sure" (see certain).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper