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CAVIL. Sophism, subtlety. Cavilis a captious argument, by which a conclusion evidently false, is drawn from a principle evidently true: Ea est natura cavillationis ut ab evidenter veris, per brevissimas mutationes disputatio, ad ea quce evidentur falsa sunt perducatur. Dig. 60, 16, 177 et 233; Id. 17, 65; Id. 33, 2, 88.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
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Language is a key concern in the discussion, with Moats emphasizing how much legislative caviling surrounded the phrase "civil union" and its relation to "marriage." Moats sees the debate as more semantic than substantive: "People solemnized a marriage.
There should be no caviling at his determination to treat with equal attention all manner of written (and some iconic) manifestations of royalism -- satires, printed texts of parliamentary speeches, occasional news pamphlets and periodic newsbooks, argumentative tracts, as well as the Cavalier verse of one's expectation.
Quibbling, equivocating, caviling critics claim it is impossible for a journalist to be objective.