- to acknowledge or avow (a fault, crime, misdeed, weakness, etc.) by way of revelation.
- to own or admit as true: I must confess that I haven't read the book.
- to declare or acknowledge (one's sins), especially to God or a priest in order to obtain absolution.
- (of a priest) to hear the confession of (a person).
- to acknowledge one's belief or faith in; declare adherence to.
- to reveal by circumstances.
- to make confession plead guilty; own: to confess to a crime.
- to make confession of sins, especially to a priest.
- (of a priest) to hear confession.
Origin of confess
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for confessed
As for the search, which will soon resume, Soelisto confessed that “the capability of our equipment is not optimum.”Did Bad Weather Bring Down AirAsia 8501?
December 29, 2014
After lunch one day, Hollande drove her back to her hotel in Limoges (he was headed to Tulle) and confessed his love.
Hollande confessed, saying he supported his ex-wife because of his children.
Hours later, he confessed to having shot his girlfriend out of jealousy.The Shocking Death of Miss Honduras
November 19, 2014
He confessed after six hours of questioning, and was convicted despite the fact DNA from the crime scene implicated someone else.The Myth of the Central Park Five
October 19, 2014
Percival confessed to his mother that night that he had wronged Uncle Peter.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
He confessed to me that he was apt to go astray when intent on rhyme.Biographical Sketches
She was studying her material; and it must be confessed that they startled her not a little.Ester Ried Yet Speaking
What would the knight have said had he confessed to his love for the Lady Maude?The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
It must be confessed (he adds drily) that in England this is a lifelong disqualification.De Libris: Prose and Verse
- (when intr, often foll by to) to make an acknowledgment or admission (of faults, misdeeds, crimes, etc)
- (tr) to admit or grant to be true; concede
- Christianity, mainly RC Church to declare (one's sins) to God or to a priest as his representative, so as to obtain pardon and absolution
Word Origin and History for confessed
"self-acknowledged," 1560s, past participle adjective from confess.
late 14c., from Old French confesser (transitive and intransitive), from Vulgar Latin *confessare, from Latin confess-, past participle stem of confiteri "to acknowledge," from com- "together" (see com-) + fateri "to admit," akin to fari "speak" (see fame (n.)).
Its original religious sense was of one who avows his religion in spite of persecution or danger but does not suffer martyrdom. Old French confesser thus had a figurative sense of "to harm, hurt, make suffer." Related: Confessed; confessing. An Old English word for it was andettan.