testify

verb
tes·​ti·​fy | \ ˈte-stə-ˌfī How to pronounce testify (audio) \
testified; testifying

Definition of testify

intransitive verb

1 : to make a solemn declaration under oath for the purpose of establishing a fact (as in a court)
2a : to make a statement based on personal knowledge or belief : bear witness
b : to serve as evidence or proof
3 : to express a personal conviction

transitive verb

1a : to bear witness to : attest
b : to serve as evidence of : prove
2 : to declare under oath before a tribunal or officially constituted public body
3 archaic
a : to make known (a personal conviction)
b : to give evidence of : show

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Other Words from testify

testifier \ ˈte-​stə-​ˌfī(-​ə)r How to pronounce testify (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for testify

Synonyms

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Examples of testify in a Sentence

She refused to testify about who had given her the information. She testified before Congress today. He agreed to testify against his drug dealer. He testified that he'd seen two people leave the building on the night of the murder. These statistics testify that the program is working. Several people testified during the revival meeting.
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Recent Examples on the Web The letter was from the county court and said Montgomery was due at the courthouse on Dec. 4 to testify in McIntosh’s domestic violence case. NBC News, 4 June 2021 Those residents have to be able to positively identify the men and be willing to testify in court, Walsh said. Michelle Mullins, chicagotribune.com, 3 June 2021 Adamson agreed to testify in exchange for prosecutors not pursuing the death penalty against him. Richard Ruelas, The Arizona Republic, 3 June 2021 This means prosecutors must call witnesses themselves to testify to the grand jury, rather than asking an FBI agent or another authority working on the case to summarize the evidence. Sonia Moghe, CNN, 26 May 2021 Survivors testify time and time again that many residents of Greenwood took up arms to defend their homes and families. Paul Gardullo, Smithsonian Magazine, 24 May 2021 One of her friends would testify that during a dinner in Santa Monica on Dec. 22, 2000 — one of her final meals — Berman griped about her landlord, who had wanted to evict her. Los Angeles Times, 21 May 2021 As part of his plea deal, Charles Scarbough must testify truthfully against his co-defendants and cooperate with prosecutors. orlandosentinel.com, 20 May 2021 DeVos, the former U.S. Secretary of Education under President Donald Trump, must testify in federal court about why so many student loan borrowers have been rejected for student loan forgiveness. Zack Friedman, Forbes, 20 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'testify.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of testify

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 2a

History and Etymology for testify

Middle English testifien, from Anglo-French testifier, from Latin testificari, from testis witness

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Time Traveler for testify

Time Traveler

The first known use of testify was in the 14th century

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Statistics for testify

Last Updated

10 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Testify.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/testify. Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for testify

testify

verb

English Language Learners Definition of testify

: to talk and answer questions about something especially in a court of law while formally promising that what you are saying is true
: to talk about or say (something) in an honest and confident way
: to show that something is true or real : to give proof of something

testify

verb
tes·​ti·​fy | \ ˈte-stə-ˌfī How to pronounce testify (audio) \
testified; testifying

Kids Definition of testify

: to make a formal statement of something sworn to be true Two witnesses testified in court.

testify

verb
tes·​ti·​fy | \ ˈtes-tə-ˌfī How to pronounce testify (audio) \
testified; testifying

Legal Definition of testify

intransitive verb

: to make a solemn declaration under oath or affirmation for the purpose of establishing a fact : give testimony

transitive verb

: to declare in testimony

Other Words from testify

testifier noun

History and Etymology for testify

Latin testificari, from testis witness

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