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

Plus, there’s something affirming about the fantasy of a celebrity choosing you over all the other fawning fangirls available to them. Kate Sloan, Glamour, "25 Sex Fantasies Women Have That Are Totally Normal," 6 Apr. 2019 But in general, the panel affirmed that the current blitz of exclusives, these swathes of fourteen announcements at once, is a short-term policy meant to get people into the Epic Games Store and put pressure on Steam. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "The Epic Games Store won't always push for exclusives 'at this scale'," 21 Mar. 2019 And Trump takes out full-page ads in major American newspapers affirming this view. Sean Illing, Vox, "Trump’s ties to the Russian mafia go back 3 decades," 8 Dec. 2018 The redacted opinion from U.S. District ChiefJudge Beryl Howell affirming the legal legitimacy of the special counsel’s appointment does not identify Miller by name, but his attorney confirmed that the ruling is in response to Miller’s request. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "Voters snub house members looking to move up," 3 Aug. 2018 The agency’s findings affirming its decision not to pursue criminal charges against Clinton were disclosed jusst two days before the vote — too late, her supporters say, to undo the damage. Desmond Butler, BostonGlobe.com, "FBI, Justice Dept. to review data sought by lawmakers," 21 May 2018 The final decision affirmed a 2016 finding that the EU had failed to eliminate unfair subsidies for two Airbus twin-aisle models, ending a long-running trade case. Bloomberg, latimes.com, "U.S. threatens sanctions against Airbus after WTO rules Boeing was harmed by Europe's subsidies," 15 May 2018 Bill Browder affirms that his father was not a Communist. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, "A Family in History," 22 Jan. 2018 Mutha Chucka only agreed to shoot with us after her Thoth Tarot deck affirmed our invitation. Devin Antheus, Vogue, "Legends of San Francisco," 30 Apr. 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

25 May 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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a strong desire or propensity

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