So, my brother is watching on tv a vote a in the American Congress. He says that the members are asked to vote with yea/nay (I have heard that from the Chamber of Commons in the UK as well). Now we are trying to figure our whether there might be an actual difference between yea/nay and yes/no, that might have gone lost with time. In particular, a person on Quora gave an interesting explanation: "English used to use what’s called a “four-form” system. “Yea” and “nay” were only used to answer positive questions, while “yes” and “no” were only used to answer negative questions." However, I cannot find confirmation of what is said.
On a side note, an aspect of this answer that is intriguing me is that I have never heard of a "four-form" system. As I have studied French and German, I am know of the existence of three-form systems (in German, ja/doch and nein, and in French, oui/si and non), but four??
Can anybody confirm/refute the theory of the "four-form system"?
If you are going to confirm it, could you please provide the source of your information?
(I have looked on stackexchange for answers, but, to the best of my knowledge, questions on yay/nay never wonder about the comparison with yes/no)