Definition of assize in English:


See synonyms for assize on


  • usually assizesA court which formerly sat at intervals in each county of England and Wales to administer the civil and criminal law. In 1972 the civil jurisdiction of assizes was transferred to the High Court, and the criminal jurisdiction to the Crown Court.

    ‘In these circumstances the case would be heard in the common law courts of assizes, quarter sessions, or petty sessions.’
    • ‘Part of the reason for this rule was that the accused had to be physically present at assizes or quarter sessions.’
    • ‘Juries at the assizes were then chosen from this panel of potential jurors.’
    • ‘In addition, the assizes gave fast and clear verdicts, enriched the treasury and extended the King's control.’
    • ‘These assizes introduced regular measures for the trial by royal judges of those suspected of serious crimes.’
    court of law, law court, bench, bar, court of justice, judicature, tribunal, forum, chancery, assizes



/əˈsīz/ /əˈsaɪz/


Middle English from Old French assise, feminine past participle of asseeir ‘sit, settle, assess’, from Latin assidere (see assess).