Origin of certain
Synonyms for certain
Related Words for for certaininexorable, necessary, imminent, unavoidable, inescapable, undeniable, impending, irresistible, unambiguous, pronounced, apparent, straightforward, evident, distinct, unequivocal, explicit, indisputable, obvious, palpable, conspicuous
- 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
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.
Also, for sure. Without doubt. For example, I can't tell for certain if this is the right color, or I know for sure that she has a new car. The first term dates from the early 1300s. The variant, dating from the late 1500s, is also used colloquially to express agreement or assert the truth of a statement, as in Mary is really bossy.—That's for sure, or Are you coming to the party?—For sure I am.
see for certain.