Meaning of non compos mentis

non compos mentis

When someone is non compos mentis, they are not sane or rational. When a person is declared by a judge to be non compos mentis, they can’t legally speak for themselves.

You can use this Latin phrase to describe someone who isn’t right in the head, either because they have a long-term mental illness, or simply because they’re confused, injured in a way that affects their thinking, or intoxicated. It’s more often used in a legal context, usually to officially label a person who isn’t able to testify in court or defend themselves. Non compos mentis literally means “not master of one’s mind.”

Definitions of non compos mentis
  1. adjective

    not of sound mind, memory, or understanding; in law, not competent to go to trial


    of unsound mind


    afflicted with or characteristic of mental derangement

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