inquest n : an inquiry into the cause of an unexpected death
investigation into the cause of a death
jury hearing an inquest into the cause of death
result of an inquest into the cause of death
- Finnish: kuolinselvitys
In common law jurisdictions that have a coroner system, an inquest is a formal process of state investigation. A common type of inquest is a medical examination of any cause of death under suspicious circumstances. Larger inquests can be held into disasters, or in some jurisdictions (not England & Wales) into cases of corruption.
The inquest, as a means of settling a matter of fact, developed in Scandinavia and the Carolingian Empire before the end of the tenth century. It was the method of gathering the survey data for the Domesday Book in England after the Norman conquest.
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