One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Acting, or wishing to act, according to one's conscience; habitually governed by a sense of what is right; scrupulous;.
2Of or relating to conscience or equity. Now rare.
3Legally valid; equitable, just. Now also in weaker sense: justifiable, reasonable.
Mid 16th century; earliest use found in Hugh Latimer (c1485–1555), bishop of Worcester, preacher, and protestant martyr. From conscion-, inferred singular of conscions, variant of conscience + -able, perhaps after e.g. passionable or rationable.
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