Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Impossible to doubt or dispute; certain.
  • adj. Not hesitating or wavering; firm: sure convictions.
  • adj. Confident, as of something awaited or expected: sure of ultimate victory.
  • adj. Bound to come about or happen; inevitable: sure defeat.
  • adj. Having one's course directed; destined or bound: sure to succeed.
  • adj. Certain not to miss or err; steady: a sure hand on the throttle.
  • adj. Worthy of being trusted or depended on; reliable.
  • adj. Free from or marked by freedom from doubt: sure of her friends.
  • adj. Careful to do something: asked me to be sure to turn off the stove.
  • adj. Obsolete Free from harm or danger; safe.
  • adv. Informal Surely; certainly.
  • idiom for sure Informal Certainly; unquestionably: We'll win for sure.
  • idiom make sure To establish something without doubt; make certain: Make sure he writes it down.
  • idiom sure enough As one might have expected; certainly.
  • idiom to be sure Indeed; certainly.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Physically secure and certain, non-failing, reliable.
  • adj. Certain in one's knowledge or belief.
  • adj. Certain to act or be a specified way.
  • adv. Without doubt.
  • interj. this sense) Yes, of course.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Certainly knowing and believing; confident beyond doubt; implicity trusting; unquestioning; positive.
  • adj. Certain to find or retain.
  • adj. Fit or worthy to be depended on; certain not to fail or disappoint expectation; unfailing; strong; permanent; enduring.
  • adj. Betrothed; engaged to marry.
  • adj. Free from danger; safe; secure.
  • adv. In a sure manner; safely; certainly.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Confident; undoubting; having no fear of being deceived or disappointed.
  • Certain of one's facts, position, or the like; fully persuaded; positive.
  • Certain to find or retain: with of: as, to be sure of success; to be sure of life or health.
  • Fit or worthy to be depended on; capable of producing a desired effect or of fulfilling requisite conditions; certain not to disappoint expectation; not liable to failure, loss, or change; unfailing; firm; stable; steady; secure; infallible.
  • Certain to be or happen; certain.
  • Undoubted; genuine; true.
  • Out of danger; secure; safe.
  • Engaged to marry; betrothed.
  • See to be sure, below.
  • To make fast by betrothal; betroth.
  • Synonyms and Certain, Positive, etc. See confident.
  • Certainly; without doubt; doubtless; surely.
  • Firmly; securely.
  • To assure; make certain.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adv. definitely or positively (`sure' is sometimes used informally for `surely')
  • adj. infallible or unfailing
  • adj. reliable in operation or effect
  • adj. physically secure or dependable
  • adj. certain to occur; destined or inevitable
  • adj. (of persons) worthy of trust or confidence
  • adj. certain not to fail
  • adj. impossible to doubt or dispute
  • adj. exercising or taking care great enough to bring assurance
  • adj. having or feeling no doubt or uncertainty; confident and assured

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, safe, from Latin sēcūrus; see secure.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English sure, sur, from Middle French sur, from Old French seür, from Latin sēcūrus ("secure", literally "carefree"), from se ("apart") + cura ("care") (compare Old English orsorg ("carefree"), from or ("without") + sorg ("care")). See cure. Displaced native Middle English wis, iwis ("certain, sure") (from Old English ġewis, ġewiss ("certain, sure")), Middle English siker ("sure, secure") (from Old English sicor ("secure, sure")). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • I'm not sure that the two gents, hot as they are, qualify as "younger" but it seems the "hipster" part is covered by the Loverboy t-shirt, worn, I'm *sure*, in a "Hahahaha, they're so bad, they're good" kind of ironic way.

    Meredith Monk and The Integrals

  • The problem with most "act now, just in case" demands and figuring that the "just in case" is considered a lie to suck in the skeptics... there is no "in case" because it's a sure thing is that the changes either won't do what they supposedly are supposed to do or would actually make it worse *and* that every "solution" invariably will cause *for sure* harm to economies and real people will suffer.

    "Let's just say that global warming deniers are now on a par with Holocaust deniers...."

  • Is yet one more reason beyond what I blogged why I am just not so sure even good enough moms like me will be *for sure* going to Heaven.

    Heaven Can Wait

  • "I warn't sure, sir," faltered Nance, whose honor had outweighed her longing for money and the comfort it would bring, and had brought her through the long city to seek the rightful owner of the thimble -- "I warn't _sure_; but I knew her name, for herself an 'a gennelman came onst to see mother long ago."

    Harper's Young People, February 24, 1880 An Illustrated Weekly

  • Work your way up during these five years into Mr. Van Ostend's confidence, and I am sure, _sure_, that by that time he will have something for you that will satisfy even your young ambition.

    Flamsted quarries

  • "I'm sure he will, little sweetheart I'm _sure_ he will."

    A Fool There Was

  • "You are sure he is married, Sara, -- _quite sure_?"

    The Hermit of Far End

  • Even now, I can't be sure you love me -- not _sure!

    Nocturne

  • _ That's the word I found to say it; she's sure -- sure -- _sure!

    King Coal : a Novel

  • "Father Davy, are you sure, _sure_?" begged his daughter.

    Under the Country Sky

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