definitions
  • synonyms

confess

[ kuhn-fes ]
/ kənˈfɛs /
||
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verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

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RELATED WORDS

disclose, reveal, acknowledge, confide, prove, divulge, concede, assert, relate, recognize, profess, declare, blow, attest, avow, snitch, affirm, leak, grant, vent

Nearby words

conferencing, conferential, conferral, conferree, conferva, confess, confessant, confessed, confessedly, confession, confession of faith

Origin of confess

1300–50; Middle English confessen < Anglo-French, Old French confesser < Medieval Latin confessāre, verbal derivative of Latin confessus, past participle of confitērī to admit, confess, equivalent to con- con- + -fitērī, combining form of fatērī to admit
SYNONYMS FOR confess
Related forms

Synonym study

1. See acknowledge.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for confess

British Dictionary definitions for confess

confess

/ (kənˈfɛs) /

verb (when tr, may take a clause as object)

(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
Derived Formsconfessable, adjective

Word Origin for confess

C14: from Old French confesser, from Late Latin confessāre, from Latin confessus confessed, from confitērī to admit, from fatērī to acknowledge; related to Latin fārī to speak
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

Word Origin and History for confess

confess


v.

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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper