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To provide evidence as a witness, subject to an oath or affirmation, in order to establish a particular fact or set of facts.

Court rules require witnesses to testify about the facts they know that are relevant to the determination of the outcome of the case. Under the law a person may not testify until he is sworn in. This requirement is usually met by a witness swearing to speak the truth. A person who does not believe in appealing to God may affirm to the court that the testimony about to be given is the truth.

A witness may testify as to facts directly observed, which is called direct evidence; facts learned indirectly, which is called Circumstantial Evidence; or, in the case of an expert, an opinion the expert has formed based on facts embodied in a hypothetical question. The parties to the court proceeding are free to question a witness as to the truthfulness of the testimony or the competence of the witness.

The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution gives the defendant in a criminal trial the right not to testify, so as to avoid Self-Incrimination. In addition, the rule that a person must testify when called as a witness has several exceptions based on the existence of a special relationship between the defendant and the potential witness. Among the most important of these exceptions are confidential communications between a husband and a wife, an attorney and a client, a doctor and a patient, and a priest and penitent.

The rules of evidence govern what a person may testify about at a court proceeding. Though there are numerous exceptions, generally a witness may not testify about what she heard another say if that testimony is offered to prove the truth of the matter asserted. Such testimony is known as Hearsay. For example, if the witness testifies that he heard that john doe was married and this statement is offered to prove that John Doe was married, it is hearsay and the court will strike the testimony from the record.


Attorney-Client Privilege; Marital Communications Privilege; Physician-Patient Privilege; Privileged Communication.


v. to give oral evidence under oath in answer to questions posed by attorneys either at trial or at a deposition (testimony under oath outside of court), with the opportunity for opposing attorneys to cross-examine the witness in regard to answers given. (See: testimony, trial, deposition, evidence)


verb acknowledge openly, affirm, affirm under oath, allege, assert, asseverate, attest, aver, avow, be sworn, bear witness, declare, depone, depose, establish, express, give evidence, give one's word, indicate, make solemn declaration, profess, prove, show, state, state a fact, state a truth, swear, take one's oath, take the stand, testari, testificari, verify
Associated concepts: compulsion to testify, privilege against self-incrimination, testify in one's own defense, testify under oath
See also: acknowledge, adduce, attest, avouch, avow, bear, bespeak, certify, inform, manifest, notify, posit, promise, swear, verify, vouch, vow


to give TESTIMONY.

TO TESTIFY. To give evidence according to law; the examination of a witness who declares his knowledge of facts.

References in periodicals archive ?
59) Fricker offers the examples of (1) an extremely shy testifier whose failure to meet the eyes of his interlocutor and self-conscious pauses are taken to indicate a general insincerity; (2) an "honest second-hand car salesman" who is taken for being dishonest by virtue of his profession; and 3) a habitual liar who is disbelieved when she is telling the truth due to being a confirmed liar.
Occasionally, testifiers made mention of Chinese women headed for bondage, such as a former bricklayer He Asi who mentioned travelling with 12 women during the passage (Deposition 376).
The testifier is surprised by its sudden visitation, and resists in vain its shaking impact.
When necessary, public hearings, hearings of voluntary testifiers, and combined meetings (meetings of related committees) are held.
And while committees chaired by Democrats might hold more meetings and call more testifiers critical of some White House policies, Bush would still retain the power of the presidential bully pulpit.
Arthur Miller is one of the supreme testifiers to the terrible fall where lack of values may lead: the burning of the innocent; the eradication of wisdom and truth.
Abstract It took several decades for sex workers to become true speakers, rather than testifiers to the speech of others.
The testifiers told of gang rape, forced sterilization and damage to reproductive ability due to the use of chemical agents in war and called for international support to protect women.
The more positive highlight for me was a mixed race church choir from Salt Lake City who seemed to turn the whole street into an intimate chapel of testifiers with their impassioned singing.