witnesseth,vb. Shows; records. • This term, usu. set in all capitals, commonly separates the preliminaries in a contract, up through the recitals, from the contractual terms themselves. Modern drafters increasingly avoid it as an antiquarian relic. Traditionally, the subject of this verb was This Agreement: the sentence, boiled down, was This Agreement witnesseth [i.e., shows or records] that, whereas [the parties have agreed to contract with one another], the parties therefore agree as follows…. Many modern contracts erroneously retain the Witnesseth even though a new verb appears in the preamble: This Agreement is between [one party and the other party]. After the preamble is a period, followed by an all-capped WITNESSETH. It is an example of a form retained long after its utility, and most lawyers do not know what it means or even what purpose it once served.
[Blacks Law 8th]