testimony

noun
tes·​ti·​mo·​ny | \ ˈte-stə-ˌmō-nē How to pronounce testimony (audio) \
plural testimonies

Definition of testimony

1a : a solemn declaration usually made orally by a witness under oath in response to interrogation by a lawyer or authorized public official
b : firsthand authentication of a fact : evidence
c : an outward sign
2a : an open acknowledgment
b : a public profession of religious experience
3a(1) : the tablets inscribed with the Mosaic law
(2) : the ark containing the tablets
b : a divine decree attested in the Scriptures

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Examples of testimony in a Sentence

The jury heard 10 days of testimony. There were contradictions in her testimony. the personal testimonies of survivors of the war It is testimony to her courage and persistence that she worked for so long in the face of such adversity. The popularity of diet fads is a testimony to the fact that people want a quick fix for their health and weight problems.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The testimony from Kimberly Loring is part of a U.S. Senate committee hearing held in Washington, D.C., to examine concerns about investigations into the deaths and disappearance of Native American women. Mary Hudetz, The Seattle Times, "US lawmakers examine Native women’s deaths, disappearances," 12 Dec. 2018 His critics, including some of his college classmates, said Kavanaugh’s testimony was a blatant misrepresentation of himself. Christianna Silva, Teen Vogue, "Brett Kavanaugh's Beach Week Letter Included a Line About Begging Girls to Hang Out," 3 Oct. 2018 Yet, even if her testimony is what fells Kavanaugh and stops him from taking a seat on the highest court in the land, Dr. Ford had to re-traumatize herself in front of the entire nation to do so. Jenny Hollander, Marie Claire, "The Christine Blasey Ford Quote That Will Stay With You," 27 Sep. 2018 Their testimony is part of more than 650 pages of grand jury transcripts released Monday by the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office in the fatal police shooting of John A. Elifritz. Samantha Swindler, OregonLive.com, "Motorcyclist killed in May I-205 crash identified," 11 June 2018 Their testimony was the grounds for subsequent perjury charges against them. Craig R. Mccoy, Philly.com, "Prosecutor who pursued Penn State officials faces questions over his tactics," 8 June 2018 In opening statements, defense attorneys suggested her testimony was fabricated in an attempt to get revenge on her ex-husband. Ryan Randazzo, azcentral, "Witness recounts decision to testify against her ex-husband in bribery case," 6 June 2018 Thanks to Mukasarasi's testimony, and that of hundreds other survivors, rape was for the first time declared a crime against humanity and a tool of genocide. Caterina Clerici & Eléonore Hamelin, Marie Claire, "Rwanda's Future Is Female," 1 Feb. 2019 In 1997 Larissa Boyce reported Nassar to MSU’s women’s gymnastics coach Kathie Klages (who is now facing trial on criminal charges of lying to investigators), according to testimony. Jason Schmidt, Glamour, "The Army of Women Who Took Down Larry Nassar," 30 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'testimony.' 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 testimony

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3a(1)

History and Etymology for testimony

Middle English testimonie, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin & Latin; Late Latin testimonium Decalogue, from Latin, evidence, witness, from testis witness — more at testament

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Statistics for testimony

Last Updated

21 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for testimony

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

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More Definitions for testimony

testimony

noun

English Language Learners Definition of testimony

: something that someone says especially in a court of law while formally promising to tell the truth
: proof or evidence that something exists or is true

testimony

noun
tes·​ti·​mo·​ny | \ ˈte-stə-ˌmō-nē How to pronounce testimony (audio) \
plural testimonies

Kids Definition of testimony

: a statement made by a witness under oath especially in a court

testimony

noun
tes·​ti·​mo·​ny | \ ˈtes-tə-ˌmō-nē How to pronounce testimony (audio) \
plural testimonies

Legal Definition of testimony

: evidence furnished by a witness under oath or affirmation and either orally or in an affidavit or deposition
former testimony
: testimony that a witness gives at a different proceeding (as another hearing or a deposition)

Note: Under Federal Rule of Evidence 804, former testimony is admissible as an exception to the hearsay rule when the declarant is unavailable and if a predecessor in interest in a civil proceeding or the party against whom the testimony is offered had an opportunity and similar motive to develop the testimony.

negative testimony
: testimony concerning what did not happen especially : testimony concerning what one did not perceive negative testimony that the witness did not hear a train whistle

Note: Negative testimony is sometimes accorded the same weight as positive testimony when the witness was in a position to perceive something and was eagerly attentive.

opinion testimony
: testimony relaying opinion as opposed to direct knowledge of the facts at issue

Note: Opinion testimony may be allowed in evidence when it helps the factfinder understand or determine the facts at issue. Such testimony by a lay witness must be rationally based on his or her perception. A qualified expert witness may also give opinion testimony. The expert's opinion may be based on facts or data that he or she perceives directly or of which he or she is made aware other than by direct perception at or before trial.

positive testimony
: testimony that presents an affirmative declaration of fact and is based on the personal knowledge of the testifier
reputation testimony
: testimony concerning a person's reputation among associates or in the community

Other Words from testimony

testimonial \ ˌtes-​tə-​ˈmō-​nē-​əl How to pronounce testimonial (audio) \ adjective
testimonially adverb

History and Etymology for testimony

Latin testimonium, from testis witness

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