OYER AND TER'MINER 1AF., to hear and to determine). In English law, a commission under the King's great seal appointing certain judges to hear and determine criminal causes in and for designated circuits. This eommission was very ancient in its origin, it having first been employed some time after the reign of Edward III., the exact date not being certain. Before the Judicature Act (q.v.), the commissioners, as the judges so appointed were called, constituted the Court of Over and Terminer. The above act vested in the High Court of .Tustiee all the powers formerly exercised by the Court of Oyer and Terminer, but its jurisdiction of criminal offenses is still dependent upon such a commission. A special commission is sometimes issued, author izing the judges to try certain designated crim inal eases out of the regular term.
The highest court of criminal jurisdiction in the State of New York was formerly known as the Court of Over and Terminer, but it derived its jurisdiction from the statutes creating it and not from a commission as was the case in Eng land. It has lice!' merged in the Supreme Court
by the Constitution.
OYEZ, 5'ycz 1AF., OF., hear ye). An intro ductory word sometimes employed by court offi cers or criers in announcing the opening of court. It was introduced into England by the Normans, together with their other legal expressions and forms. The English translation 'hear ye' is still employed by most court criers in the United States.
OYO, Wyo. The capital of the African State of Yoruba. now included in British Nigeria, sit uated about 90 miles northeast of Abeokuta (Map: Africa. E 4). It has an estimated popu lation of GO,000. and its inhabitants are said to be intelligent and skillful in the crafts.