ARTICLES OF IMPEACHMENT. An instrument which, in cases of impeachment, (q.v.)
is used, and performs the same office which an indictment does, in a
common criminal case, is known by this name. These articles do not usually
pursue the strict form and accuracy of an indictment., Wood. Lect. 40, p.
605; Foster, 389, 390; Com. Dig. Parliament, L 21. They are sometimes quite
general in the form of the allegations, but always contain, or ought to
contain, so much certainty, as to enable the party to put himself on the
proper defence, and in case of an acquittal, to avail himself of it, as a
bar to another impeachment. Additional articles may, perhaps, be exhibited
at any stage of the prosecution. Story on the Sec. 806; Rawle on the Const.
2. The answer to articles of impeachment is exempted from observing great strictness of form; and it may contain arguments as well as facts. It is usual to give a full and particular answer to each article of the accusation. Story, Sec. 808.