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verb as·sent \ə-ˈsent, a-\

Simple Definition of assent

  • : to agree to or approve of something (such as an idea or suggestion) especially after carefully thinking about it

Full Definition of assent

  1. intransitive verb
  2. :  to agree to something especially after thoughtful consideration :  concur

as·sen·tor or as·sent·er play \-ˈsen-tər\ noun

Examples of assent

  1. Cornel West of Harvard introduced Bradley as “my brother, my comrade.” Then Bradley, donning drugstore reading glasses, standing motionless at the podium, took the air out of the cavernous hall with a lecture on the history of racism and the complexity of ethnic subcultures. He got nods of knowing assent, but he could have had a standing O. —Howard Fineman, Newsweek, 19 July1999

  2. Appointments at top universities often required the recommendation and assent of experts from other fields; insofar as deans, provosts, and other administrators came from economics and the hard sciences, many of them recognized rational choice as something close to their own ideals of legitimate scientific research. —Jonathan Cohn, New Republic, 25 Oct. 1999

  3. From The Second Sex to In a Different Voice, I could read and appreciate the analysis or the argument without feeling personally very involved. I could, and did, argue for feminism because I believed in much of what feminist writers were saying about gender equality, but my assent came from my head, not my heart. I knew that as an audience for feminist writers I was a pretty tertiary concern. —Robert J. Connors, College English, February 1996

  4. Once filming began, sequences that had been axed for budgetary reasons were put back-with the studio's tacit assent. —Charles Fleming, Vanity Fair, August 1995

  5. The general proposed a detailed plan and the President assented.

  6. <are we to conclude from your silence that you assent?>

Origin of assent

Middle English, from Anglo-French assentir, assenter, from Latin assentari, from assentire, from ad- + sentire to feel — more at sense

First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of assent

assent, consent, accede, acquiesce, agree, subscribe mean to concur with what has been proposed. assent implies an act involving the understanding or judgment and applies to propositions or opinions <voters assented to the proposal>. consent involves the will or feelings and indicates compliance with what is requested or desired <consented to their daughter's going>. accede implies a yielding, often under pressure, of assent or consent <officials acceded to the prisoners' demands>. acquiesce implies tacit acceptance or forbearance of opposition <acquiesced to his boss's wishes>. agree sometimes implies previous difference of opinion or attempts at persuasion <finally agreed to come along>. subscribe implies not only consent or assent but hearty approval and active support <subscribes wholeheartedly to the idea>.



noun as·sent \ə-ˈsent, a-\

Definition of assent

  1. :  an act of agreeing to something especially after thoughtful consideration :  an act of assenting :  acquiescence, agreement

Examples of assent

  1. One day I arrived at class to discuss some abolition treaties written during the early Romantic period. An African American woman, Stephanie, was introduced to me by one of my students. Stephanie asked if she could sit in on the class, and I of course assented. —Laura Mandell, Profession, 1997

  2. Christopher, on his end, is supposed to have assented to and even welcomed this public confirmation of his own negligibility, not that foreign diplomats needed any. —Tom Carson, Village Voice, 19 July 1994

  3. Fearing that without a new batch of social measures the country would slip away from him, Roosevelt assented—sometimes rather grudgingly—to proposals that in sum make up the semi-welfare state under which we have lived this past half century. —Irving Howe, New York Times Book Review, 28 Sept.1986

Origin of assent

(see 1assent)

First Known Use: 14th century

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February 11, 2016

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