- willful disobedience to or open disrespect for the rules or orders of a court (contempt of court) or legislative body.
- an act showing such disrespect.
Origin of contempt
British Dictionary definitions for contempt of court
Word Origin for contempt
Word Origin and History for contempt of court
late 14c., from Latin contemptus "scorn," from past participle of contemnere "to scorn, despise," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + *temnere "to slight, scorn," of uncertain origin. Phrase contempt of court is attested from 19c., though the idea is several centuries older.
Culture definitions for contempt of court
contempt of court
The deliberate obstruction of a court's proceedings by refusing to obey a court order or by interfering with court procedures. Contempt of court can be punished by fine, imprisonment, or both.
Idioms and Phrases with contempt of court
see familiarity breeds contempt.