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confident

[ kon-fi-duhnt ]
/ ˈkɒn fɪ dənt /
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See synonyms for: confident / confidently on Thesaurus.com

adjective

having strong belief or full assurance; sure: confident of fulfillment.
sure of oneself; having no uncertainty about one's own abilities, correctness, successfulness, etc.; self-confident; bold: a confident speaker.
excessively bold; presumptuous.
Obsolete. trustful or confiding.

noun

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Origin of confident

First recorded in 1570–80; from Latin confīdent- (stem of confīdēns), present participle of confīdere.See confide, -ent

OTHER WORDS FROM confident

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH confident

confidant, confidante, confident
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

CONFIDENT VS. CONFIDANT VS. CONFIDANTE

What’s the difference between confident, confidant, and confidante?

Confident is an adjective that means sure of oneself or one’s abilities, or having a high level of certainty about something. Confidant is a noun meaning someone you feel comfortable telling secret or private things to—a person you confide in. The word confidante is a gender-specific form of confidant that’s applied to women.

Very rarely, the word confident can be used as a noun meaning the same thing as confidant, but we’re pretty confident almost no one uses it this way. We’re also sorry to report that there’s a kind of sofa called a confidente that can also be called a confidante, but honestly you’ll be better off if you just forget we ever said anything about it.

Confidant and confidante are borrowed from French, which has grammatical gender, so some words end differently depending on whether they are applied to men or women (with e being the feminine ending). This happens in a few other pairs of words in English, like blond and blonde, though in many cases the term without the e has become largely gender-neutral. This is the case with confidant, which is the more commonly used of the two.

What’s the best way to be confident that you’re using the right word? Just remember that the ending of both confidant and confidante sounds like the more formal pronunciation of aunt—your aunt could be your confidant (as could your commandant, the ending of which also sounds the same).

The ending of confident, on the other hand, sounds like dent.

Here’s an example of confident and confidant used correctly in the same sentence. (The word confidant could be replaced with confidante if you were referring to a woman and wanted to make the term gender-specific.)

Example: I am confident that what I confide to my confidant stays confidential. 

Want to learn more? Read the full breakdown of the difference between confident, confidant, and confidante.

Quiz yourself on confident vs. confidant vs. confidante!

Should confident, confidant, or confidante be used in the following sentence?

She felt _____ that her entry would win the contest.

WHEN TO USE

What are other ways to say confident?

The adjective confident means “having strong belief or full assurance.” How does confident compare to synonyms certain, sure, and positive? Find out on Thesaurus.com.

Example sentences from the Web for confident

British Dictionary definitions for confident

confident
/ (ˈkɒnfɪdənt) /

adjective

(postpositive foll by of) having or showing confidence or certainty; sureconfident of success
sure of oneself; bold
presumptuous; excessively bold

Derived forms of confident

confidently, adverb

Word Origin for confident

C16: from Latin confīdens trusting, having self-confidence, from confīdere to have complete trust in; see confide
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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