1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Contumacy

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CONTUMACY (Lat. contumacia, obstinacy; derived from the root tem-, as in temnere, to despise, or possibly from the root tum-, as in tumere, to swell, with anger, &c.), a stubborn refusal to obey authority, obstinate resistance; particularly, in law, the wilful contempt of the order or summons of a court (see Contempt or Court). In ecclesiastical law, the contempt of the authority of an ecclesiastical court is dealt with by the issue of a writ de contumace capiendo from the court of chancery at the instance of the judge of the ecclesiastical court; this writ took the place of that de excommunicato capiendo in 1813, by an act of George III. c. 127 (see Excommunication).