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From Middle English enditen, endyten, from Old French enditer, from Late Latin indictāre, from Latin in- + dictāre. Doublet of indite.

The irregular spelling is due to the word having been borrowed into Middle English from Old French, and not from Latin as was the case with most other descendants of dictāre (but see dight). The borrowed /iː/ regularly shifted to /aɪ/ in the course of the Great Vowel Shift; the ⟨c⟩ represents a later attempt at graphic Latinisation.





indict (third-person singular simple present indicts, present participle indicting, simple past and past participle indicted)

  1. To accuse of wrongdoing; charge.
    a book that indicts modern values
    • 2023 September 29, Benjamin Lee, quoting Jonathan Keasey, “OceanGate Titan sub disaster movie in the offing”, in The Guardian[1], →ISSN:
      Co-writer Jonathan Keasey has said the film will aim to indict “our nonstop, 24-7 media cycle that convicts and ruins the lives of so many people without any due process”.
  2. (law) To make a formal accusation or indictment for a crime against (a party) by the findings of a jury, especially a grand jury.
    his former manager was indicted for fraud
    • 2023 April 11 [2023 April 10], Sarah Elbeshbishi, quoting Betsy Ankney, “Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley slams Donald Trump, Ron DeSantis in campaign letter”, in USA Today[2], →ISSN, →OCLC, archived from the original on 12 April 2023:
      “Now, let’s consider what our competition did in the same six-week period,” wrote Betsy Ankney, Haley’s campaign manager. “Donald Trump had a good Q1, if you count being indicted as ‘good.'"

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See also