Definition of Hearsay

1. Noun. Gossip (usually a mixture of truth and untruth) passed around by word of mouth.

Exact synonyms: Rumor, Rumour
Generic synonyms: Comment, Gossip, Scuttlebutt
Derivative terms: Rumor, Rumour

2. Adjective. Heard through another rather than directly. "Hearsay information"
Similar to: Indirect

Definition of Hearsay

1. n. Report; rumor; fame; common talk; something heard from another.

Definition of Hearsay

1. Noun. information that was heard by one person about another ¹

2. Noun. (legal) evidence based on the reports of others rather than on personal knowledge; normally inadmissible because not made under oath ¹

3. Noun. (legal) evidence: an out-of-court statement offered in court for the truth of the matter asserted; normally inadmissible because not subject to cross-examination, unless the hearsay statement falls under one of the many exceptions ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Hearsay

1. secondhand information [n -SAYS]

Hearsay Pictures

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Hearsay

hearing officer
hearing trumpet
hearken back
hearsay (current term)
hearsay evidence
hearsay rule

Literary usage of Hearsay

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. Roscoe's Digest of the Law of Evidence in Criminal Cases by Henry Roscoe (1888)
"[ *25 PAGE General nature of hearsay evidence .25 Evidence to explain the nature of a ... 25 of complaint in cases of rape 26 in other cases 28 hearsay ..."

2. When the Victim Is a Child by Debra Whitcomb (1992)
"The Residual hearsay Exception Another hearsay exception that has been applied to some ... hearsay Exceptions: Availability of Declarant Immaterial Other ..."

3. A Selection of Cases on Evidence at the Common Law by James Bradley Thayer (1900)
"THEKE were always qualifications to the doctrine that hearsay testimony was ... So, later, testimony by hearsay was more or less used for corroborative and ..."

4. An Illustrated Treatise on the Law of Evidence by Thomas Welburn Hughes (1905)
"hearsay evidence is evidence which depends solely for its truth or falsity ... On the other hand, an assertion is not hearsay merely because it is made by a ..."

5. A Treatise on the Law of Indirect and Collateral Evidence by John Henry Gillett (1897)
"Definition of hearsay evidence. not competent in criminal 225. ... Circumstances giving credit to injured party is dead. hearsay do not render it ad- 231. ..."

6. Argumentation and Debating by William Trufant Foster (1908)
"That is called hearsay evidence. Its value does not depend wholly on ... The objections to hearsay evidence, for purposes of argument, ..."

7. A Treatise on the Law of Evidence by Samuel March Phillipps, Andrew Amos (1838)
"It is proposed to treat of the rules adopted by our Courts, for the exclusion of hearsay evidence, and of secondary evidence. In treating of hearsay ..."

8. Select Cases on the Law of Evidence by John Henry Wigmore (1913)
"There is but one rule of the Analytic type, — the hearsay rule, ... It is these extra-judicial testimonial assertions which the hearsay rule prohibits. ..."

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