CONTUMACY, civil law. The refusal or neglect of a party accused to appear and answer to a charge preferred against him in a court of justice. This word is derived from the Latin contumacia, disobedience. 1 Bro. Civ. Law, 455; Ayl. Parer. 196; Dig. 50, 17, 52; Code Nap. art. 22.
2. Contumacy is of two kinds, actual and presumed: actual contumacy is when the party before the court refuses to obey some order of the court; presumed contumacy is the act of refusing or declining to appear upon being cited. 3 Curt. Ecc. R. 1.