I saw a headline about an intention to depose someone. It was not clear from the headline itself which sense of depose was meant, though of course the article made the matter plain.
It made me wonder how the sense of “force to testify” arose.
The oldest English sense, per the OED, is the “remove from office” sense, which stems straight from the French and also makes immediate sense in terms of the Latin roots, which would literally meaning “put down”.
“Force to testify”, it turns out, is a newer meaning than “testify”. The OED’s etymological notes don’t mention how the “testify” sense arose, and to my mind it does not relate in an obvious way to the older meaning. Do you have any insights?