Definitions

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

  • n. The act of confirming.
  • n. Something that confirms; verification.
  • n. A Christian rite admitting a baptized person to full membership in a church.
  • n. A ceremony in Judaism that marks the completion of a young person's religious training.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An official indicator that things will happen as planned
  • n. Verification that something has happened
  • n. A sacrament of sealing and strengthening in many Christian Churches, often including a ceremony of anointing

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of confirming or strengthening; the act of establishing, ratifying, or sanctioning.
  • n. That which confirms; that which gives new strength or assurance; as to a statement or belief; additional evidence; proof; convincing testimony.
  • n. A rite supplemental to baptism, by which a person is admitted, through the laying on of the hands of a bishop, to the full privileges of the church, as in the Roman Catholic, the Episcopal Church, etc.
  • n. A conveyance by which a voidable estate is made sure and not voidable, or by which a particular estate is increased; a contract, express or implied, by which a person makes that firm and binding which was before voidable.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of confirming.
  • n. The act of establishing; a fixing, settling, setting up, establishing, or making more firm; establishment.
  • n. The act of rendering certain or showing to be true; the act of verifying or corroborating; corroboration: as, the confirmation of opinion or report.
  • n. The act of rendering valid or ratifying, especially Informal assent of the final or sovereign authority, or by action of a coordinate authority (as the United States Senate): as, the confirmation of an appointment, or of a grant, treaty, promise, covenant, stipulation, or agreement.
  • n. Eccles.: A rite whereby baptized persons are admitted to full communion with the church. In the Roman Catholic, Greek, and Anglican churches it consists of the imposition of hands and prayer by a bishop (or in the Greek Church by episcopal authority), preceded in the two former by unction or anointing with chrism. In the first two churches it is regarded as the confirming or strengthening of the grace given in baptism and the bestowal of the gifts of the Spirit. In the Anglican Church, high-churchmen and low-churchmen regard it from different points of view, the latter attaching especial importance to the personal renewal made in it, by the persons confirmed, of the vows taken by others in their name at baptism, while the former believe it to be essentially a sacramental rite, conveying the strengthening power of the Holy Ghost, ‘this rite is believed to be recorded in the New Testament as a laying on of hands following baptism, distinct from ordination, and administered by apostles only. Unction was discontinued in the Anglican Church not long after the Reformation. In the early church confirmation immediately followed baptism, and the Greek Church has always retained this practice; in the West, however, the two have been separated since the thirteenth century by an interval of seven years or more. Formerly confirmation was sometimes allowed to be administered by presbyters if authorized by the bishop; and this is still the case in the Greek Church, where it is administered by priests with chrism consecrated by a bishop. Confirmation is one of the seven great religious rites, distinctively called sacraments by the Roman Catholic Church, and sacraments or mysteries by the Greek. The Anglican formularies mention it as one of “five commonly called sacraments,” but do not place these in the same rank with baptism and the Lord's supper as sacraments “ordained of Christ our Lord in the Gospel.” (See sacrament.) In the Lutheran and Reformed churches the rite is administered by the pastors. Other Protestant denominations reject it.
  • n. The practice, enjoined in some ancient western directories, of pouring a little of the consecrated wine from the chalice out of which the celebrant had communicated himself into the unconsecrated wine in another chalice or other chalices. This was supposed to serve as consecration to the wine in the latter.
  • n. That which confirms; that which gives new strength or assurance; additional evidence; proof; convincing testimony; corroboration.
  • n. In law, an assurance of title by the conveyance of an estate or right in esse from one to another, by which a voidable estate is made sure or unvoidable, or a particular estate is increased, or a possession made perfect.

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

  • n. making something valid by formally ratifying or confirming it
  • n. additional proof that something that was believed (some fact or hypothesis or theory) is correct
  • n. a sacrament admitting a baptized person to full participation in the church
  • n. information that confirms or verifies
  • n. a ceremony held in the synagogue (usually at Pentecost) to admit as adult members of the Jewish community young men and women who have successfully completed a course of study in Judaism

Etymologies

From Latin confirmatio, noun of process from confirmatus ("confirmed"), perfect passive participle of confirmare, from con- ("with") + firmare ("to firm or strengthen") (Wiktionary)

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