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 affirm (audio) \ adjective
affirmance \ ə-​ˈfər-​mən(t)s How to pronounce affirm (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 Decades of research repeatedly affirm the same outcome: frequent trading leaves investors poorer. April Rudin, Forbes, 3 June 2021 The committee voted 6-4 to affirm the bureau’s finding that the arrest was reasonable, though many members said they were disturbed by police actions. oregonlive, 3 June 2021 The justices would be wise to take a pass on the Harvard case, or to affirm the lower courts’ decisions. WSJ, 31 May 2021 Then came the veto of the City Council's decision to affirm the Planning Commission's denial. Andrew Rorvig, Star Tribune, 27 May 2021 Your caretaking should extend to continuing to affirm your wife’s (and your) lifelong values. Amy Dickinson, chicagotribune.com, 23 May 2021 Your caretaking should extend to continuing to affirm your wife’s (and your) lifelong values. Washington Post, 23 May 2021 Your caretaking should extend to continuing to affirm your wife’s (and your) lifelong values. Amy Dickinson, Detroit Free Press, 23 May 2021 Amid Trump's false claims over voter fraud, Stefanik supported an objection during the Electoral College vote count to affirm President Joe Biden's win. Clare Foran, CNN, 14 May 2021

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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Time Traveler for affirm

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for affirm

Last Updated

10 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Affirm.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/affirm. Accessed 13 Jun. 2021.

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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 affirm (audio) \ noun
affirmation \ ˌa-​fər-​ˈmā-​shən How to pronounce affirm (audio) \ noun

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