Origin of certain
Examples from the Web for certain
Certain features of its history suggest why this may be the case.
Unlike the Soviet Union at a certain period in history, the Russian economy does not hold a candle to that of the United States.
I believe in the power of institutions—Congress, public policy, certain ideas about politics—that last for a long time.
And a certain presumed presidential candidate needs to be doing it, too.The Democrats’ Black Hole—and What They Can Do About It|Michael Tomasky|December 31, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Canned drinks like Mercy contain up 5,000 percent of the daily value of certain vitamins.
I am not without a certain sort of self-reproach in all this.
If he had been alive I am certain he would not have shirked his duty.Yule Logs|Various
Now in Dublin one allows a certain latitude, but in Downing Street!
I repeat—for certain reasons—that I closed with an anecdote.Essays on Paul Bourget|Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
But this is certain, that whatever the sex set their hearts upon, they make thorough work of it.Clarissa, Volume 6 (of 9)|Samuel Richardson
British Dictionary definitions for certain
- known but not specified or namedcertain people may doubt this
- (as pronoun; functioning as plural)certain of the members have not paid their subscriptions
Word Origin for certain
Word Origin and History for certain
c.1300, "determined, fixed," from Old French certain "reliable, sure, assured" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *certanus, from Latin certus "sure, fixed, settled, determined" (also source of Italian certo, Spanish cierto), originally a variant past participle of cernere "to distinguish, decide," literally "to sift, separate" (see crisis).
Of persons, "full of confidence in one's knowledge or judgment," from mid-14c. Euphemistic use (of a certain age, etc.) attested from mid-18c. Certainer, certainest were common to c.1750, but have fallen from proper use for some reason. Expression for certain "assuredly" is attested by early 14c.
Idioms and Phrases with certain
see for certain.