affirm

verb
af·​firm | \ ə-ˈfərm How to pronounce affirm (audio) \
affirmed; affirming; affirms

Definition of affirm

transitive verb

1a : validate, confirm He was affirmed as a candidate.
b : to state positively He affirmed his innocence.
2 : to assert (something, such as a judgment or decree) as valid or confirmed The court affirmed his conviction.
3 : to show or express a strong belief in or dedication to (something, such as an important idea) laws affirming the racial equality of all people

intransitive verb

1 : to testify or declare by affirmation (see affirmation sense 2) as distinguished from swearing an oath
2 : to uphold a judgment or decree of a lower court

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Other Words from affirm

affirmable \ ə-​ˈfər-​mə-​bəl How to pronounce affirmable (audio) \ adjective
affirmance \ ə-​ˈfər-​mən(t)s How to pronounce affirmance (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for affirm

assert, declare, affirm, protest, avow mean to state positively usually in anticipation of denial or objection. assert implies stating confidently without need for proof or regard for evidence. asserted that modern music is just noise declare stresses open or public statement. declared her support for the candidate affirm implies conviction based on evidence, experience, or faith. affirmed the existence of an afterlife protest emphasizes affirming in the face of denial or doubt. protested that he really had been misquoted avow stresses frank declaration and acknowledgment of personal responsibility for what is declared. avowed that all investors would be repaid in full

Examples of affirm in a Sentence

We cannot affirm that this painting is genuine. They neither affirmed nor denied their guilt. laws affirming the racial equality of all peoples They continued to affirm their religious beliefs. The decision was affirmed by a higher court.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Requirements include approval from medical providers, which can be difficult to obtain in places where few doctors are trained to provide gender-affirming care to transgender people, Christian said. Kristin Lam, USA TODAY, "More than 7,000 Americans have gender X IDs, a victory for transgender rights. Is it a safety risk, too?," 8 Aug. 2019 We originally were married in Vegas, the city of lights, and decided to affirm our love in Paris, the city of love. Jasmine Grant, Essence, "Black Wedding Moment Of The Day: This Vow Renewal Ceremony In Paris Took Us Up, Up And Away," 8 Aug. 2019 Yet, an incident of religious discrimination has brought the companies together to affirm a basic value: food is secular. Kuwar Singh, Quartz India, "The bigotry of one Indian customer has united arch-rivals Zomato and Uber Eats," 1 Aug. 2019 In 2016, President Barack Obama enabled transgender people to openly serve in the military and access gender-affirming medical treatment. Sarah Wu, BostonGlobe.com, "Baker administration affirms support for transgender members of National Guard," 18 July 2019 The Mayo Clinic’s Transgender and Intersex Specialty Clinic has instituted a gender-affirming atmosphere, said Davidge-Pitts. STAT, "New guidelines aim to enlist primary care physicians in transgender care," 1 July 2019 About 34 percent of transgender patients in the state report being denied coverage for LGBTQ-specific medical services, such as gender-affirming care or hormones. Jessica Seaman, The Denver Post, "Checkup Denver: LGBTQ health care barriers, kratom ban for minors and more Colorado health news," 10 June 2019 The new diagnosis was intended to clear hurdles to gender-affirming treatment, including surgical procedures. Emanuella Grinberg, CNN, "What is medically necessary treatment for gender-affirming health care?," 31 May 2018 The appeals court affirmed a nationwide injunction ordering the administration to retain major elements of the program while the case moved forward. Adam Liptak, BostonGlobe.com, "Supreme Court will decide on continuation of DACA," 28 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'affirm.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of affirm

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for affirm

alteration (conformed to Latin affirmāre) of Middle English affermen "to fix firmly, make steadfast, establish, confirm, assert," borrowed from Anglo-French afermer, affermer, going back to Latin affirmāre "to strengthen, confirm, assert positively," from ad- ad- + firmāre "to strengthen, fortify," derivative of firmus "strong, durable, firm entry 1"

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Statistics for affirm

Last Updated

17 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for affirm

The first known use of affirm was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for affirm

affirm

verb

English Language Learners Definition of affirm

formal : to say that something is true in a confident way
formal : to show a strong belief in or dedication to (something, such as an important idea)
law : to decide that the judgment of another court is correct

affirm

verb
af·​firm | \ ə-ˈfərm How to pronounce affirm (audio) \
affirmed; affirming

Kids Definition of affirm

: to declare that something is true The man affirms that he is innocent.
af·​firm | \ ə-ˈfərm How to pronounce affirm (audio) \

Legal Definition of affirm

1 : to assert as true or factual
2 : to assert (as a judgment) as valid or confirmed affirmed the lower court's ruling — compare remand, reverse

intransitive verb

1 : to make a solemn declaration under the penalties of perjury in place of swearing an oath to which one conscientiously objects
2 : to uphold the judgment or actions of a lower court the appeals court affirmed

Other Words from affirm

affirmance \ ə-​ˈfər-​məns How to pronounce affirmance (audio) \ noun
affirmation \ ˌa-​fər-​ˈmā-​shən How to pronounce affirmation (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on affirm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with affirm

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for affirm

Spanish Central: Translation of affirm

Nglish: Translation of affirm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of affirm for Arabic Speakers

Comments on affirm

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