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Mon., Nov. 26, 2012, 2:28 a.m.

A Word A Day — sederunt

Good morning, Netizens...

November 26, 2012

Word of the Day

  • sederunt
  • audio pronunciation
  • \suh-DEER-unt\


: a prolonged sitting (as for discussion)

"This letter is a report of a long sederunt ... at Davos Platz, Dec. 15, 1880." — From a letter by Robert Louis Stevenson, dated December 19, 1880

"A proposed schedule was passed, whereby (among other things) informal, job fair-style briefing groups will be held on Sunday afternoon, Monday morning will be devoted to an orientation for the entire assembly, and a regular business sederunt will commence Monday afternoon." — From an article in the Presbyterian Record, January 1, 2012


"Sederunt" was summonsed by members of the Scottish Court of Session and other deliberative bodies during the 17th century to refer to the list of people present at meetings and to the "sittings" themselves. The word sat in deliberation for some time before being called upon by the general public as a word for any prolonged sitting, whether for relaxation, reading, casual discussion, or the like. "Sederunt" proved to be the right choice because it derives from Latin "sedēre," meaning "to sit."

From Merriam-Webster Online at



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Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.