1. willful refusal to appear before a court or comply with a court order
; can result in a finding of contempt of court
2. obstinate rebelliousness and insubordination
; resistance to authority
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Contumacy \Con"tu*ma*cy\ (k[o^]n"t[-u]*m[.a]*s[y^]), n.; pl.
Contumacies (k[o^]n"t[-u]*m[.a]*s[i^]z). [L. contumacia,
fr. contumax, -acis, insolent; prob. akin to contemnere to
despise: cf. F. contumace. Cf. Contemn.]
1. Stubborn perverseness; pertinacious resistance to
The bishop commanded him . . . to be thrust into the
stocks for his manifest and manifold contumacy.
2. (Law) A willful contempt of, and disobedience to, any
lawful summons, or to the rules and orders of court, as a
refusal to appear in court when legally summoned.
Syn: Stubbornness; perverseness; obstinacy.