verb (used with object), re·cused, re·cus·ing.

to reject or challenge (a judge or juror) as disqualified to act, especially because of interest or bias.

verb (used without object), re·cused, re·cus·ing.

to withdraw from a position of judging so as to avoid any semblance of partiality or bias.

Origin of recuse

1350–1400; Middle English recusen < Middle French recuser < Latin recūsāre; see recusant
Related formsrec·u·sa·tion [rek-yoo-zey-shuh n] /ˌrɛk yʊˈzeɪ ʃən/, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for recuse

Contemporary Examples of recuse

Historical Examples of recuse

  • Or he may recuse the judge, which should be referred to the Suprema and not to arbiters, who cause much delay.

  • Boccaccio must have been a clever fellow to write both argument and story; I am not, et je me recuse.

    Vailima Letters

    Robert Louis Stevenson

British Dictionary definitions for recuse


verb US, Canadian and Southern African

(tr; reflexive) to remove from participation in a court case due to potential prejudice or partiality

Word Origin for recuse

C19: see recusant
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 recuse

late 14c., "to reject another's authority as prejudiced," from Old French recuser (13c.), from Latin recusare "make an objection against; decline, refuse, reject; be reluctant to," from re- (see re-) + causa (see cause (n.)). Specifically, in law, "reject or challenge (a judge or juror) as disqualified to act." The word now is used mostly reflectively. Related: Recused; recusing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper