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oyer

[oh-yer, oi-er]
noun Law.
  1. oyer and terminer.
  2. a hearing in open court involving the production of some document pleaded by one party and demanded by the other, the party pleading the document being said to make profert.
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Origin of oyer

1375–1425; late Middle English < Anglo-French; Old French oïr to hear < Latin audīre
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for oyers

oyer

noun
  1. English legal history (in the 13th century) an assize
  2. (formerly) the reading out loud of a document in court
  3. See oyer and terminer
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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 oyers

oyer

n.

early 15c., "a hearing of causes," from Anglo-French oyer, Old French oir, from Latin audire "to hear" (see audience). Especially in phrase oyer and terminer (early 15c., but from late 13c. in Anglo-Latin and Anglo-French), literally "a hearing and determining," in England a court of judges of assize, in U.S. a higher criminal court.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper