in-kwi-zish'-un (darash, "to follow," "diligently inquire," "question," "search" (Deuteronomy 19:18; Psalms 9:12), baqash, "to search out," "to strive after," "inquire" (Esther 2:23)):

The term refers, as indicated by these passages, first of all to a careful and diligent inquiry necessary to ascertain the truth from witnesses in a court, but may also refer to a careful examination into circumstances or conditions without official authority.

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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Entry for 'INQUISITION'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". 1915.