Summon, summons, call, cite, convoke, convene, muster mean to demand the presence of persons or, by extension, things.
Summon implies the exercise of authority or of power; it usually suggests a mandate, an imperative order or bidding, or urgency.
Summons , sometimes interchangeable with summon , usually implies the actual serving with a legal writ to appear in court.
Call is often used in place of summon , especially when less formality is implied or the imperativeness of the bidding is not stressed, or when actual shouting is suggested. Often, however, there is a suggestion of an impulsion of God, of Nature, or of necessity.
Cite (see also ADDUCE ) may occasionally replace summon or summons, especially in legal use.
Convoke implies a summons to assemble, especially for legislative or deliberative purposes.
Convene is related to convoke somewhat as call is to summon ; it is weaker in its suggestions of the exercise of authority and of imperativeness, but otherwise it is often not distinguishable.
Muster implies the summoning of an army or other body of troops or of a ship’s company (as for military action, inspection, parade, or exercise). In extended use it implies the assembling of a number of things that form a collection or a group in order that they may be exhibited, displayed, or utilized as a whole.
Muster is used in place of summon with such objects as courage or strength , especially when the context implies the previous dissipation of the quality mentioned.