- wit|ness1 W3S2 [ˈwıtnıs] n▬▬▬▬▬▬▬1¦(crime/accident)¦2¦(in a court of law)¦3¦(signing a document)¦4 be witness to something5¦(christian belief)¦▬▬▬▬▬▬▬[: Old English; Origin: witnes 'knowledge, account, witness', from wit; WIT]1.) ¦(CRIME/ACCIDENT)¦someone who sees a crime or an accident and can describe what happened▪ Police have appealed for witnesses to come forward.witness to▪ One witness to the accident said the driver appeared to be drunk.▪ an eye witness (=someone who sees an event) to the robbery2.) ¦(IN A COURT OF LAW)¦someone who appears in a court of law to say what they know about a crime or other eventkey/star/principal witness▪ the key witness in the case against the brothers▪ The defense is expected to call them as witnesses .witness for the prosecution/defence also prosecution/defence witness(=someone the prosecution or defence lawyers choose as a witness in order to help prove their case)3.) ¦(SIGNING A DOCUMENT)¦someone who is present when an official document is signed, and who signs it too, to say that they saw it being signedwitness to▪ a witness to a will4.) be witness to sthformal to be present when something happens, and watch it happening▪ We were witness to the worst excesses of the military.5.) ¦(CHRISTIAN BELIEF)¦ [U and C]AmE a public statement of strong Christian belief, or someone who makes such a statement→bear witness at ↑bear1 (15)witness 2witness2 v▬▬▬▬▬▬▬1¦(crime/accident)¦2¦(experience something)¦3¦(time/place)¦4¦(official document)¦5 witness something6¦(religion)¦▬▬▬▬▬▬▬1.) ¦(CRIME/ACCIDENT)¦ [T]to see something happen, especially a crime or accident▪ Several residents claim to have witnessed the attack.2.) ¦(EXPERIENCE SOMETHING)¦ [T]to experience important events or changes▪ Priests have witnessed an increase in religious intolerance.3.) ¦(TIME/PLACE)¦ [T]if a time or place witnesses an event, the event happens during that time or in that place▪ Recent years have witnessed the collapse of the steel industry.4.) ¦(OFFICIAL DOCUMENT)¦ [T]if you witness the signing of an official document, you are there when it is signed, and sign it yourself to prove this▪ Will you witness my signature ?5.) witness sth also ..., as witnessed by sthused to introduce an example that proves something you have just mentioned▪ Bad economic times can result in political dictatorships. Witness Germany in the 1930s.6.) ¦(RELIGION)¦ [I]to speak publicly about your Christian beliefs
Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.