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n. An official summons or notice given to a person to appear; the paper containing such summons or notice. The act of citing a passage from a book, or from another person, in his own words; also, the passage or words quoted; quotation. Enumeration; mention; as, a citation of facts. (Law) A reference to decided cases, or books of authority, to prove a point in law. A reference that identifies a particular case, law review article, book, statute or other resource. For example, the citation for Roe v. Wade is 410 U.S. 959 (1973). The case appears in volume 410 of the official United States Reports beginning on page 959. The opinion was issued in 1973. 42 U.S.C. §1983 is the citation for civil rights legislation. It appears in title 42 of the United States Code at section 1983.


The Bluebook provides rules on proper citation format. Basic citations for most U.S. federal cases: U.S. - United States Reports, the official reporter for US Supreme Court cases; S.Ct - Supreme Court Reporter, an unofficial reporter of US Supreme Court cases; L.Ed.2d - Lawyers' Edition, an unofficial reporter of US Supreme Court cases; U.S.C. - United States ...

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