Date: 1300-1400
Language: Old French
Origin: sur, from Latin securus; SECURE1


1 adjective
sure1 S1 W1

certain you know something

[not before noun] confident that you know something or that something is true or correct [= certain]:
'That's Sarah's cousin.' 'Are you sure?'
'What time does the show start?' 'I'm not sure.'
sure (that)
I'm sure there's a logical explanation for all this.
Are you sure that you know how to get there?
My mother, I felt sure, had not met him before.
not sure how/where/when etc
Henry wasn't sure how to answer this.
not sure if/whether
I'm not sure if I'm pronouncing this correctly.
sure of
He wasn't even sure of his mother's name.
They were talking about her, she was sure of that.
sure about
'That's the man I saw in the building last night.' 'Are you quite sure (=completely sure) about that?'

make sure

a) to find out if something is true or to check that something has been done:
'Did you lock the front door?' 'I think so, but I'd better make sure.'
make sure (that)
I wanted to make sure you were all right.
First, make sure the printer has enough paper in it.
b) to do something so that you can be certain of the result
make sure (that)
I'll walk you home, just to make sure no one bothers you.
make sure of (doing) something
Spain made sure of their place by holding Japan to a 1-1 draw.
Thomas would be sorry - she would make sure of that.

certain about your feelings

[not before noun] certain about what you feel, want, like etc
sure (that)
Are you sure you really want a divorce?
sure of
Carla says she is very sure of her love for Tony.

certain to be true

certain to be true
one thing is (for) sure
One thing's for sure, we'll never be able to move this furniture on our own.
sure sign/indication
Those black clouds are a sure sign of rain.

certain to happen/succeed

certain to happen, succeed, or have a particular result
sure to do something
He's sure to get nervous and say something stupid.
sure way to do something/of doing something
There was only one sure way of finding out - and that was to visit him.
sure thing/bet American English (=something that will definitely happen, win, succeed etc)

be sure of (doing) something

to be certain to get something or be certain that something will happen:
United must beat Liverpool to be sure of winning the championship.
You can be sure of one thing - there'll be a lot of laughs.

sure of yourself

confident in your own abilities and opinions, sometimes in a way that annoys other people:
Kids nowadays seem very sure of themselves.

be sure to do something

spoken used to tell someone to remember to do something:
Be sure to ring and let us know you've got back safely.

for sure

a) informal certainly or definitely:
No one knows for sure what really happened.
b) spoken used to emphasize that something is true:
We'll always need teachers, that's for sure.
c) American English informal spoken used to agree with someone

sure thing

spoken informal used to agree to something:
'Can you pick me up later?' 'Sure thing.'

to be sure

spoken formal used to admit that something is true, before saying something that is the opposite:
It was difficult, to be sure, but somehow we managed to finish the job.

(as) sure as hell

spoken informal used to emphasize a statement:
If I could get you out of there, I sure as hell would.

have a sure hold/footing

if you have a sure hold or footing, your hands or feet are placed firmly so they cannot slip
sureness noun [uncountable]

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