• To deliberately take hold of; to grab or capture.
  • To take advantage of (an opportunity or circumstance).
  • To take possession of (by force, law etc.).
  • To have a sudden and powerful effect upon.
  • To bind, lash or make fast, with several turns of small rope, cord, or small line.
  • To fasten, fix.
  • To lay hold in seizure, by hands or claws (+ on or upon).
  • To have a seizure.
  • To bind or lock in position immovably; see also seize up.
  • To submit for consideration to a deliberative body.
  • (with of) To cause (an action or matter) to be or remain before (a certain judge or court).


  • Earlier seise, from Middle English seisen, sesen, saisen, from Old French seisir ("to take possession of; invest (person, court)"), from Medieval Latin sacīre ("to lay claim to, appropriate") (8th century) in the phrase ad propriam sacire, from Old Low Frankish *sakjan ("to sue, bring legal action"), from Proto-Germanic *sakjaną, *sakōną (compare Old English sacian ("to strive, brawl")), from Proto-Germanic *sakaną (compare Old Saxon sakan ("to accuse"), Old High German sahhan ("to bicker, quarrel, rebuke"), Old English sacan ("to quarrel, claim by law, accuse"). Cognate to sake and Latin sagio ("to perceive acutely").

Modern English dictionary

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