1. [syn: recognizance, recognisance]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Recognizance \Re*cog"ni*zance\ (r[-e]*k[o^]g"n[i^]*zans or
r[-e]*k[o^]n"[i^]-), n. [F. reconnaissance, OF.
recognoissance, fr. recognoissant, p. pr. of recognoistre to
recognize, F. reconna[^i]tre, fr. L. recognoscere; pref. re-
re- + cognoscere to know. See Cognizance, Know, and cf.
Recognize, Reconnoissance.] [Written also
(a) An obligation of record entered into before some court
of record or magistrate duly authorized, with
condition to do some particular act, as to appear at
the same or some other court, to keep the peace, or
pay a debt. A recognizance differs from a bond, being
witnessed by the record only, and not by the party's
(b) The verdict of a jury impaneled upon assize. --Cowell.
Note: Among lawyers the g in this and the related words
(except recognize) is usually silent.
2. A token; a symbol; a pledge; a badge.
That recognizance and pledge of love
Which I first gave her. --Shak.
3. Acknowledgment of a person or thing; avowal; profession;
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: (law) a security entered into before a court with a
condition to perform some act required by law; on failure
to perform that act a sum is forfeited [syn: