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assess

[ uh-ses ]
/ əˈsɛs /
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See synonyms for: assess / assessed / assesses / assessing on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object)

to estimate officially the value of (property, income, etc.) as a basis for taxation.
to fix or determine the amount of (damages, a tax, a fine, etc.): The hurricane damage was assessed at six million dollars.
to impose a tax or other charge on.
to estimate or judge the value, character, etc., of; evaluate: to assess one's efforts.

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Origin of assess

First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English assessen, from Old French assesser, fromMedieval Latin assessāre “to assess a tax,” derivative of Latin assessus “seated beside (a judge)” (past participle of assidēre ), equivalent to as- “toward” + sed- (stem of sedēre “to sit”) + -tus past participle suffix; see as-, sit1

historical usage of assess

Assess comes from Middle English assessen, from Old French assesser, from Late Latin assessāre “to fix a tax on.” Assessāre is a Late Latin frequentative verb derived from assess-, the inflectional stem of the past participle assessus, from the Latin verb assidēre “to sit next to or by (as an assistant, attendant, or aide),” formed from the preposition and prefix ad, ad-, here having the sense “nearness, presence at,” and -sidēre, a combining form of the verb sedēre “to sit, be seated.”
In Proto-Indo-European, two dental consonants (such as d + d, d + t, t + t, etc.) could not appear together. In the Italic languages (Latin, Oscan, Umbrian) and Germanic, the two dental consonants developed into -ss- ; thus the original Latin past participle of sedēre , sedtus (originally an adjective suffix, typically forming past participles in Latin) regularly became sessus, the base for the Late Latin verb assessāre.

OTHER WORDS FROM assess

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH assess

1. access, assess , excess2. accessible, assessable
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use assess in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for assess

assess
/ (əˈsɛs) /

verb (tr)

to judge the worth, importance, etc, of; evaluate
(foll by at) to estimate the value of (income, property, etc) for taxation purposesthe estate was assessed at three thousand pounds
to determine the amount of (a fine, tax, damages, etc)
to impose a tax, fine, etc, on (a person or property)

Derived forms of assess

assessable, adjective

Word Origin for assess

C15: from Old French assesser, from Latin assidēre to sit beside, from sedēre to sit
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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