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From Latin dictum (proverb, maxim), from dictus (having been said), perfect passive participle of dico (I say). Compare Spanish dicho (saying).



dictum (plural dicta or dictums)

  1. An authoritative statement; a dogmatic saying; a maxim, an apothegm.
    • 1949, Bruce Kiskaddon, George R. Stewart, Earth Abides
      ...a dictum which he had heard an economics professor once propound...
  2. A judicial opinion expressed by judges on points that do not necessarily arise in the case, and are not involved in it.
  3. The report of a judgment made by one of the judges who has given it.
  4. An arbitrament or award.

See also[edit]




Etymology 1[edit]

Neuter form of dictus (said, spoken), past passive participle of dīcō (to say, to speak).


dictum n (genitive dictī); second declension

  1. a word, saying, something said
  2. proverb, maxim, saw
  3. bon mot, witticism
    Synonym: dictērium
  4. verse, poetry
  5. a prophesy, prediction
  6. order, command
  7. promise, assurance

Second-declension noun (neuter).

Case Singular Plural
Nominative dictum dicta
Genitive dictī dictōrum
Dative dictō dictīs
Accusative dictum dicta
Ablative dictō dictīs
Vocative dictum dicta
Related terms[edit]
  • Asturian: dichu
  • English: dictum
  • Friulian: dit
  • Italian: detto
  • Old French: dit
  • Piedmontese: dit
  • Portuguese: dictum
  • Spanish: dicho
  • Venetian: dito, dit
Further reading[edit]
  • dictum in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • dictum in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • dictum in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition, 1883–1887)
  • dictum in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • Carl Meissner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • (ambiguous) a short, pointed witticism: breviter et commode dictum
    • (ambiguous) a witticism, bon mot: facete dictum
    • (ambiguous) a far-fetched joke: arcessitum dictum (De Or. 2. 63. 256)
    • (ambiguous) to make jokes on a person: dicta dicere in aliquem
    • (ambiguous) to obey a person's orders: dicto audientem esse alicui
    • (ambiguous) as I said above: ut supra (opp. infra) diximus, dictum est
    • (ambiguous) so much for this subject...; enough has been said on..: ac (sed) de ... satis dixi, dictum est

Etymology 2[edit]

See the etymology of the main entry.



  1. inflection of dictus:
    1. nominative/accusative/vocative neuter singular
    2. accusative masculine singular



  1. accusative supine of dīcō

Norwegian Nynorsk[edit]


dictum n (definite singular dictumet, indefinite plural dicta or dictum, definite plural dicta or dictaa or dictai or dictuma or dictumi)

  1. form removed with the spelling reform of 2012; superseded by diktum



dictum m (plural dictums)

  1. dictum