affirmative

adjective
af·​fir·​ma·​tive | \ ə-ˈfər-mə-tiv How to pronounce affirmative (audio) \

Definition of affirmative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : asserting that the fact is so gave an affirmative answer affirmative proof
2 : positive an affirmative approach
3 : favoring or supporting a proposition or motion an affirmative vote was on the affirmative side in the debate
4 logic : asserting a predicate of a subject

affirmative

noun

Definition of affirmative (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an expression (such as the word yes) of affirmation or assent
2 : the side that upholds the proposition stated in a debate
3 logic : an affirmative (see affirmative entry 1 sense 4) proposition
in the affirmative
: with an affirmative reply : with a reply that means "yes" He answered in the affirmative.

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Other Words from affirmative

Adjective

affirmatively adverb
responded affirmatively

Synonyms & Antonyms for affirmative

Synonyms: Noun

yea, yes

Antonyms: Noun

nay, negative, no, non placet

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Examples of affirmative in a Sentence

Adjective

She gave an affirmative answer, not a negative answer.

Noun

we have five affirmatives and two negatives for forming the committee

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Trump officials said that the Obama administration overstepped its authority by going beyond what the Supreme Court has said in affirmative-action cases. Nick Anderson, Washington Post, "Trump administration moves to rescind Obama-era guidance on race in admissions," 3 July 2018 Why aren’t Democrats and the business community making an affirmative case for a steady legal immigration? Eric Johnson, Recode, "American capitalism broke in the 1980s. Can it be fixed?," 7 Nov. 2018 Democrats need to make an affirmative case for supporting the Jewish state, lest anti-Israeli politics evolve into outright anti-Semitism. The Editorial Page, WSJ, "A Lesson in Anti-Semitism," 14 Feb. 2019 During the press conference, David Curtis cited Judge Gregory Carro’s instruction that, in an affirmative defense, the burden of proof belongs to the defense. Maureen O'connor, The Cut, "The Jury and the Family Speak Out As the Nanny Trial Ends," 19 Apr. 2018 The act also does not affect any immunities, liabilities, or affirmative defenses under other laws. Howard Dakoff, chicagotribune.com, "What can condo association do about an owner's disruptive tenant?," 17 Jan. 2018 Courts in this district and elsewhere have already answered this question in the affirmative. Cyrus Farivar, Ars Technica, "Limo firm to judge: Tell us whether Uber drivers are employees," 8 Oct. 2018 Season three presented convincing answers to that question, both affirmative and negative. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "The Expanse is an excellent sci-fi space opera. But it’s fundamentally a detective show.," 1 July 2018 Janus struck a second blow by requiring affirmative consent before collecting money from public workers. That’s good news for the litigants in the 2014 Harris case, whose claim for damages has been pending under the new title Riffey v Rauner. Red Jahncke, WSJ, "A Union Scam Could Be About to End," 16 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Use liberally the affirmatives Yes, ma’am and Yes, sir, having grown up under threat of a stiff switch. Melissa Lyttle, Smithsonian, "The First Family of Rodeo," 13 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'affirmative.' 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 affirmative

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for affirmative

Adjective

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French affirmatif, borrowed from Late Latin affirmātīvus, from Latin affirmātus (past participle of affirmāre "to affirm") + -īvus -ive

Noun

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French affirmatif, noun derivative of affirmatif affirmative entry 1

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Statistics for affirmative

Last Updated

14 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for affirmative

The first known use of affirmative was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for affirmative

affirmative

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of affirmative

formal : saying or showing that the answer is "yes" rather than "no"

affirmative

adjective
af·​fir·​ma·​tive | \ ə-ˈfər-mə-tiv How to pronounce affirmative (audio) \

Kids Definition of affirmative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : saying or showing that the answer is "yes" He gave an affirmative answer.
2 : being positive or helpful Take an affirmative approach to the problem.

affirmative

noun

Kids Definition of affirmative (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an expression (as the word yes) of agreement
2 : the side that supports or votes for something

affirmative

adjective
af·​fir·​ma·​tive | \ ə-ˈfər-mə-tiv How to pronounce affirmative (audio) \

Legal Definition of affirmative

1 : asserting the existence of certain facts especially in support of a cause of action affirmative proof
2 : resulting from an intentional act affirmative concealment
3 : involving or requiring application of effort an affirmative duty
4 : favoring or supporting a proposition or motion an affirmative vote

Other Words from affirmative

affirmatively adverb

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Comments on affirmative

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a strong desire or propensity

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