• WordNet 3.6
    • adj contumacious wilfully obstinate; stubbornly disobedient "a contumaceous witness is subject to punishment"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Contumacious Exhibiting contumacy; contemning authority; obstinate; perverse; stubborn; disobedient. "There is another very, efficacious method for subduing the most obstinate, contumacious sinner."
    • Contumacious (Law) Willfully disobedient to the summons or orders of a court.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • contumacious Headstrong; insolent; hence, resisting legitimate authority, whether civil, ecclesiastical, military, or parental; stubbornly disobedient or rebellious: as, a contumacious child.
    • contumacious Specifically In law, wilfully disobedient to a lawful order of a judicial or legislative body, or showing wilful contempt of its authority. Synonyms Stubborn, Refractory, etc. (see obstinate), proud, headstrong, unmanageable, ungovernable, unruly, wilful, perverse.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Contumacious kon-tū-mā′shus opposing lawful authority with contempt: obstinate: stubborn
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. contumax, -acis,. See Contumacy
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. contumax, -acis, insolent, from con, and tum-ēre, to swell, or temn-ĕre, to despise.


In literature:

Though the raja's conduct was contumacious, Hastings seems to have acted with undue severity.
"The Political History of England - Vol. X." by William Hunt
Shouldst thou refuse, thou art lost; for assuredly the emperor will not be slow to punish thy contumacy.
"Traditions of Lancashire, Volume 2 (of 2)" by John Roby
He was threatened with death by starvation in Jamaica, where the contumacious savages refused to give him provisions.
"Astronomy for Amateurs" by Camille Flammarion
Contumacy was punishable by expulsion and exclusion from every profession.
"The Greville Memoirs" by Charles C. F. Greville
Something had gone wrong at home or abroad, and his grievance had rankled and rendered him unusually contumacious.
"That Lass O' Lowrie's" by Frances Hodgson Burnett
She sat still, looking a little contumacious, and very much indisposed to stir.
"Shirley" by Charlotte Brontë
Let him "think on these things" as he looks upon his congregation, as he rebukes their contumacy.
"The Message and the Man:" by J. Dodd Jackson
And because he came not to answer on the day assigned in the Citation, the Bishop cursed him for contumacy.
"Fifteenth Century Prose and Verse" by Various
Nor is he very apt to allow the contumacy of age in his prospective father-in-law to aggravate him.
"Eleven Possible Cases" by Frank R. Stockton
Never before had a twin-soul been so sinful, so contumacious.
"The Goddess of Atvatabar" by William R. Bradshaw

In poetry:

But let him mortal insolence behold:--
How with proud contumacy rife,
Wantons the stem in lusty life
My marriage craving;--frenzy over-bold,
Spur ever-pricking, goads them on to fate,
By ruin taught their folly all too late.
"A Prayer For Artemis" by Aeschylus

In news:

Every morning I expect my teenage daughter to be contumacious when I try to get her out of bed at 6 a.m.