Au"to-da-f['e]"\, n.; pl. Autos-da-f['e]. [Pg., act of the faith; auto act, fr. L. actus + da of the + f['e] faith, fr. L. fides.]

1. A judgment of the Inquisition in Spain and Portugal condemning or acquitting persons accused of religious offenses.

2. An execution of such sentence, by the civil power, esp. the burning of a heretic. It was usually held on Sunday, and was made a great public solemnity by impressive forms and ceremonies.

3. A session of the court of Inquisition.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, © 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.
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