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Confirm Vs Conform

The words confirm and conform are often confused, and rightly so, because a change in the vowel from ‘i’ to ‘o’ changes the entire word! Hence, it is important to learn what each word means and how these words originated. In this Grammar.com article, let us explore everything about confirm and conform.


2:54 min read
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  Ramya Shankar  —  Grammar Tips
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Confirm

The more common of the two words, confirm is used to establish something as true using proof or facts. For example, to confirm a theory is to prove it using some facts, to confirm a plan is to make it 100%, to confirm a decision is to accept it.

The word originated from the Latin words con + firmare (strengthen) which became the middle English word confirm.

Confirm is a verb with the past tense as confirmed. The noun form is confirmation.

Few examples of confirm in its various meanings are:

·         As of now, we have received confirmation from 10 people regarding the event.

·         He has not confirmed yet about the meeting.

·         She confirmed that the cash was stolen by an insider only.

·         If you don’t confirm the reservation within an hour, we will have to give the seats to someone else.

·         His seat in the college was confirmed only after they paid the fees in full.

·         Her presence in the meeting confirms that she supports the movement.

·         My maid confirmed that she did not see anything unusual happening in the corridor.

·         We will confirm all the facts with the concerned parties before filing the case.

Conform

Conform is also a verb. It means to adhere to or comply with the regulations or standards. For example, when a person conforms, it means he adheres to or follows the rules and act in an acceptable or expected manner (behaviour). Such a person is referred to as a conformist. A person who doesn’t comply with the rules is said to be a ‘non-conformist’.

Confirm Vs Conform

The noun form of conform is conformity, which is the idea of complying with the given rules and standards.

The origin of the word comes from the Latin word con + formare (to form) meaning to make something like another.

Some examples:

·         He will be allowed inside only if he conforms to the rules of the society.

·         The pressure of conforming led him to take this extreme step.

·         There is a striking conformity amongst the members of Literature group.

·         Your project should conform to the guidelines mentioned in our document.

·         The construction doesn’t conform to the basic government guidelines.

·         Do not be conformed to this world.

Note that the last sentence is a part of the Bible, the holy book of Christians. It means to not believe just every rule laid out in this world and renew one’s mind to new ideas as well.

Summary

We have seen that both the words are a world apart. Remember that the conform with an ‘o’ refers to certain standards or rules to be followed, whereas the confirm with an ‘i’ is something that you do – accept, make plans or decide something.

“The builder confirmed that they are conforming to all the guidelines for the construction of this building!”

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