In English ecclesiastical law. A species of pleading, wherethe defendant, instead of denying the plaintiff’s charge uj>on oath, has any circumstancesto offer in his defense. This entitles him, in his turn, to the plaintiff’s answerupon oath, upon which he may proceed to proofs as well as his antagonist. 3 Bl.Comm. 100; 3 Steph. Comm. 720.

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