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

As President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi has rightfully affirmed, Yemenis want no part of Iran’s revolution. Ahmed Awad Binmubarak, WSJ, "Keep Your Revolution to Yourself, Iran," 14 Feb. 2019 Since the news of He’s experiment broke, many scientists have affirmed that CRISPR isn’t yet safe and precise enough to be used in human embryos. Julia Belluz, Vox, "Is the CRISPR baby controversy the start of a terrifying new chapter in gene editing?," 22 Jan. 2019 Subsequent cases have affirmed that admissions officials may continue to consider race in admissions to ensure a diverse student body. Charlotte West, Teen Vogue, "What You Need to Know about Race and College Admissions," 27 Sep. 2018 Pakistan’s highest court affirmed its decision to free a Christian woman who had been convicted of blasphemy, dismissing a legal challenge by religious hard-liners. Saeed Shah, WSJ, "Top Court Clears Way for Woman in Blasphemy Case to Leave Pakistan," 29 Jan. 2019 In 2005, Michigan's appeals court affirmed Salter's conviction. Corey Williams, Fox News, "Charges dismissed in 2003 slaying; man released from prison," 15 Aug. 2018 The high court later affirmed Kavanaugh's opinion without hearing the case. Richard Wolf, USA TODAY, "Will Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh deliver the change conservatives crave?," 10 July 2018 Last month, a federal appeals court affirmed a 2016 decision by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Robert Kressel that the parishes and other nonprofit entities were independent, meaning their assets could not be tapped in the bankruptcy case. NBC News, "St. Paul archdiocese to pay $210M to clergy abuse victims," 1 June 2018 The Louisiana Supreme Court affirmed the trial court's ruling that English had authority to concede guilt, despite McCoy's opposition. Heather Nolan, NOLA.com, "Supreme Court grants new trial for La. death row inmate whose lawyer conceded guilt," 14 May 2018

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

2 Mar 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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of or relating to a parable or parabola

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