\ \ [13] Testament is one of a range of English words that go back to Latin testiswitness’. This was derived from a prehistoric Indo-European base *tris- ‘three’, and so denoted etymologically a ‘third person’, who was not party to an agreement and thus could be a disinterested witness to it. Other English members of the testis family include testicle [15] (which etymologically ‘bears witness’ to a man’s virility), testify [14], testimony [14], and the prefixed forms attest [16], contest, detest, intestate [14], and protest. The use of testament for ‘will’ was inspired by the notion of a ‘witnessed’ document. Its application to the two parts of the Bible arose from a mistranslation of Greek diathékē, which meant both ‘covenant’ and ‘will, testament’. It was used for the ‘covenant’ between God and human beings, but Latin translators rendered it as if it were being used for ‘will’ rather than ‘covenant’.

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

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  • testament — [ tɛstamɑ̃ ] n. m. • 1120; lat. ecclés. testamentum, pour traduire le gr. diathêkê « disposition testamentaire, convention », et pour traduire l hébr. berith « alliance » I ♦ Relig. chrét. 1 ♦ Vx Alliance. « Ils ne sont point demeurés dans mon… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Testament — Тестамент …   Википедия

  • testament — Testament. s. m. Tesmoignage qu on laisse par escrit de sa derniere volonté. Testament passé devant Notaires. testament bon & valable. testament dicté mot à mot. testament clos & seellé. testament qui peche dans les formes. on est demeuré d… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • testament — TESTAMÉNT, testamente, s.n. 1. Act juridic unilateral, revocabil cât timp testatorul este în viaţă, prin care cineva îşi exprimă dorinţele ce urmează a i fi împlinite după moarte, mai cu seamă în legătură cu transmiterea averii sale. ♢ Testament… …   Dicționar Român

  • Testament — en 2008 Datos generales Nacimiento 1982 …   Wikipedia Español

  • testament — Testament, Testamentum. Testament noncupatif, Nuncupatum testamentum. Un testament noncupatif, ou autre derniere disposition noncupative: quand elle n est point escrite, mais seulement dicte de bouche, Nuncupata voluntas. Testament fait sans… …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • testament — tes·ta·ment / tes tə mənt/ n [Latin testamentum, from testari to call as a witness, make a will, from testis witness] 1: an act by which a person determines the disposition of his or her property after death a testament of property 2: will ◇ A… …   Law dictionary

  • Testament — Tes ta*ment, n. [F., fr. L. testamentum, fr. testari to be a witness, to make one s last will, akin to testis a witness. Cf. {Intestate}, {Testify}.] 1. (Law) A solemn, authentic instrument in writing, by which a person declares his will as to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • testament — [tes′tə mənt] n. [OFr < LL(Ec) testamentum, Testament (in N.T., transl. of Gr diathēkē, covenant) < L, a will < testari, to testify, make a will < testis, a witness: see TESTIFY] 1. Obs. a covenant, esp. one between God and man 2. [T… …   English World dictionary

  • testament — tes‧ta‧ment [ˈtestəmənt] noun [countable] LAW a will * * * testament UK US /ˈtestəmənt/ noun ► [C or U] proof that something exists or is true: be (a) testament to sth »These po …   Financial and business terms

  • Testament — Sn std. (15. Jh.) Entlehnung. Entlehnt aus l. tēstāmentum, Abstraktum zu l. tēstārī (tēstātus sum) bezeugen , zu l. tēstis m. Zeuge . Adjektiv: testamentarisch.    Ebenso nndl. testament, ne. testament, nfrz. testament, nschw. testamente, nnorw.… …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

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