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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Competent


COMPETENT, adjective

1. Suitable; fit; convenient; hence, sufficient, that is, fit for the purpose; adequate; followed by to; as, competent supplies of food and clothing; a competent force; an army conpetent to the preservation of the kingdom or state; a competent knowledge of the world. This word usually implies a moderate supply, a sufficiency without superfluity.

2. Qualified; fit; having legal capacity or power; as a competent judge or court; a competent witness. In a judge or court, it implies right or authority to hear and determine; in a witness, it implies a legal right or capacity to testify.

3. Incident; belonging; having adequate power or right.

That is the privilege of the infinite author of things, who never slumbers nor sleeps, but is not competent to any finite being.

It is not competent to the defendant to alledge fraud in the plaintiff.