Im*peach" (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Impeached (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Impeaching.] [OE. empeechier to prevent, hinder, bar, F. empecher, L. impedicare to entangle; pref. im- in + pedica fetter, fr. pes, pedis, foot. See Foot, and Appeach, Dispatch, Impede.]

1.

To hinder; to impede; to prevent.

[Obs.]

These ungracious practices of his sons did impeach his journey to the Holy Land. Sir J. Davies.

A defluxion on my throat impeached my utterance. Howell.

2.

To charge with a crime or misdemeanor; to accuse; especially to charge (a public officer), before a competent tribunal, with misbehavior in office; to cite before a tribunal for judgement of official misconduct; to arraign; as, to impeach a judge. See Impeachment.

3.

Hence, to charge with impropriety; to dishonor; to bring discredit on; to call in question; as, to impeach one's motives or conduct.

And doth impeach the freedom of the state. Shak.

4. Law

To challenge or discredit the credibility of, as of a witness, or the validity of, as of commercial paper.

⇒ When used in law with reference to a witness, the term signifies, to discredit, to show or prove unreliable or unworthy of belief; when used in reference to the credit of witness, the term denotes, to impair, to lessen, to disparage, to destroy. The credit of a witness may be impeached by showing that he has made statements out of court contradictory to what he swears at the trial, or by showing that his reputation for veracity is bad, etc.

Syn. -- To accuse; arraign; censure; criminate; indict; impair; disparage; discredit. See Accuse.

 

© Webster 1913.


Im*peach", n.

Hindrance; impeachment.

[Obs.]

 

© Webster 1913.

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