One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Law. Especially of a will or testament: oral, verbal.
Early 17th century; earliest use found in Thomas Cartwright (d. 1603), theologian and religious controversialist. From classical Latin nuncupāt-, past participial stem of nuncupāre nuncupate + -ory. Compare post-classical Latin nuncupatorius naming, calling by name (793 in a British source), oral, verbal, dedicatory.
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