Difference Between Affirm and Confirm

Affirm vs Confirm

Affirm and confirm are two words in the English language that are often confused with one another. This bafflement can most probably be attributed towards the similarity of pronunciation and a certain relation that the two words bear in meaning, as well. However, affirm and confirm are two different words that can be used to denote different meanings in completely different contexts, because of which one must observe their definitions closely.

What does affirm mean?

The word affirm is a verb that  stands for stating or asserting something in a positive manner and also to maintain a certain factor as true. Affirm, a transitive verb that requires a direct subject along with one or more objects, is used for contrasting intransitive verbs, which do not have objects.

Affirm can also imply to state something solemnly and can be used in a legal sense, as well. Affirm can be used in order to express agreement with a certain commitment that one is entrusted with while it also can be used to ratify a voidable transaction. Look at the following examples.

The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the magistrate court.

He affirmed his presence to the event.

She solemnly affirmed his innocence.

What does confirm mean?

‘Confirm’ is an intransitive verb which requires an object after it which implies to verifying, establishing the truth, validity or accuracy of factors. Confirm can also mean to make valid or binding by some formal or legal act or to ratify certain acts. Confirm can also be taken as acknowledging a certain fact with definite assurance while also being used to strengthening or stating with conviction a person’s opinions, habits and etc. Look at the following examples.

Her words today confirmed my suspicions.

I need to confirm my reservation at the hotel today.

The two countries confirmed the treaty to end the war between the two nations.

This incident confirmed my determination to run for mayor.

The accident confirmed his fear of driving.

What is the difference between Affirm and Confirm?

Affirm and confirm are two similar words that are often confused for one another due to their similarities. While there are certain instances where the two can be used interchangeably, it is good to know the many differences between the two words so that they could be used in a correct manner, in relevant contexts.

• Affirm is a transitive verb. Confirm is an intransitive verb.

• Affirm is to validate or to state something positively. Confirm means to establish the truth, the validity or the accuracy of something. Look at the following examples.

This statement affirms the innocence of the suspect.

My mother confirmed the hotel reservation.

• Affirm is mostly a positive assertion. Confirm is not necessarily always positive.

  • Jonathan R. Henry

    Confirm is listed as intransitive, yet it is used as a transitive verb in all of the examples.