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evasion of a point, 1540s, from Latin quibus "by what (things)?," dative or ablative plural of quid "in what respect? to what extent?; how? why?," neuter of relative pronoun quis (see who). "[A]s a word of frequent occurrence in legal documents ... hence associated with the 'quirks and quillets' of the law." [OED]. Also cf. quibble.