The online dictionary definitions of the word "Oath" do no include the idea that a deity is required.

Google Define

1. a solemn promise, often invoking a divine witness, regarding one's future action or behaviour.

"they took an oath of allegiance to the king"


noun [ C ] UK ​ /əʊθ/ US ​ /oʊθ/ oath noun [ C ] (PROMISE) ​ a promise, especially that you will tell the truth in a law court:

Medieval knights took an oath of allegiance/loyalty to their lord. The witness placed her hand on the Bible and took the oath (= promised to tell the truth).

However the UK Parliament Oaths act of 1978 makes a distinction between an Oath and an Affirmation for swearing in a member of parliament. Has the meaning of the word Oath changed over time? Is it common to use the word Oath in the meaning of a promise without requiring a divinity to witness said oath?

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    The US constitution has this provision, also. Instead of an oath "I swear..." one can use an affirmation "I affirm...". For example, this may be used by someone with a religious objection to oaths. – GEdgar Feb 5 at 14:04

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