acknowledge


acknowledge
acknowledge 1 Acknowledge, admit, own, avow, confess are synonymous when they mean to disclose something against one’s will or inclination. All usually imply some sort of pressure as that of the law or of conscience leading to the disclosure.
Acknowledge or its noun acknowledgment implies making known something which has been or might have been kept back or concealed
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acknowledge a secret marriage

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acknowledged his complete ignorance of mathematics

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she did at last extort from her father an acknowledgment that the horses were engaged— Austen

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Admit, with less suggestion of possible concealment, stresses reluctance to grant or concede and refers rather to facts than to their implications; to admit a charge may involve merely the granting of the fact alleged, not necessarily (as frequently with acknowledge) the acceptance of the point of view which the charge implies
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at last the government at Washington admitted its mistake—which governments seldom do— Cather

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Own is less formal than acknowledge and regards the thing acknowledged in its relation to oneself
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owned himself at a loss as to what to do next

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owned to forty years

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when a man owns himself to have been in an error, he does but tell you in other words that he is wiser than he was— Pope

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Avow implies an open or bold acknowledgment or declaration and often one made in the face of hostility
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communists, fascists, and other avowed enemies of parliamentarism— Ogg & Zink

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made the idea of democratic nationalism intellectually respectable and thus perhaps made it easier for the Colonel publicly to avow nationalism as his creed— Forcey

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Confess usually applies to what one feels to be wrong
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confess a crime

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confess one’s sins

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but it is often used with no such implication, suggesting merely deference to the opinion of others
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I am not, I confess, fully convinced

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Analogous words: disclose, divulge, *reveal: *grant, concede, allow: publish, *declare, proclaim
Antonyms: deny
Contrasted words: conceal, *hide, secrete: disavow, disown (see affirmative verbs at ACKNOWLEDGE): gainsay, contradict, impugn, negative (see DENY)
2 Acknowledge, recognize agree in meaning to take cognizance of in some way, usually agree in meaning to take cognizance of in some way, usually in a way dictated by custom or convention and implying acceptance or assent.
Acknowledge is found in certain idioms where the concrete method of taking notice is not stated but connoted; one acknowledges a letter by sending a reply; one acknowledges a gift by a message indicating the receipt and acceptance of the gift and one’s gratitude; one acknowledges a greeting by an appropriate conventional response (as a bow, smile, or friendly remark). In freer expression acknowledge usually implies definite or formal acceptance, as of a principle as binding or of a claim as rightful or of a person as ruler
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he acknowledged the obligation of a son to support his aged parents

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in Italy during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries there were two acknowledged sources of political power: the Empire and the Church— Huxley

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Recognize, though often used interchangeably with acknowledge, suggests more strongly authoritative sanction or full admission concerning a given or implied status or suggests actual and manifest, as contrasted with formal or merely verbal, acceptance
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in 1918 England, France, and the United States recognized Czechoslovakia as an independent state

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the ladies never acted so well as when they were in the presence of a fact which they acknowledged but did not recognizeMeredith

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Recognize sometimes implies, as acknowledge never does, full realization or comprehension
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courts . . . have been . . . slow to recognize that statutes . . . may imply a policy different from that of the common law— Justice Holmes

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Analogous words: accept, *receive: notice, note, remark (see SEE): respond, reply, *answer
Antonyms: ignore
Contrasted words: disregard, slight, *neglect: repudiate, spurn, reject (see DECLINE)

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • acknowledge — ac*knowl edge ([a^]k*n[o^]l [e^]j), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {acknowledged} ([a^]k*n[o^]l [e^]jd); p. pr. & vb. n. {acknowledging} ([a^]k*n[o^]l [e^]j*[i^]ng).] [Prob. fr. pref. a + the verb knowledge. See {Knowledge}, and cf. {Acknow}.] 1. To own or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • acknowledge — ac·knowl·edge vt edged, edg·ing 1: to indicate recognition and acceptance of the power of taxation in the general and state governments is acknowledged to be concurrent McCulloch v. Maryland, 17 U.S. 316 (1819) 2 a: to show by word or act that… …   Law dictionary

  • acknowledge — ac‧knowl‧edge [əkˈnɒlɪdʒ ǁ ˈnɑː ] verb [transitive] 1. to tell someone that you have received something such as a letter they have sent to you: • We shall be grateful if you will kindly acknowledge receipt of this letter. 2. to admit or accept… …   Financial and business terms

  • acknowledge — [v1] verbally recognize authority accede, accept, acquiesce, agree, allow, approve, attest to, certify, defend, defer to, endorse, grant, own, ratify, recognize, subscribe to, support, take an oath, uphold, yield; concepts 8,50,88 Ant. forswear,… …   New thesaurus

  • acknowledge — [ak näl′ij, əknäl′ij] vt. acknowledged, acknowledging [earlier aknowledge < ME knowlechen < knowleche (see KNOWLEDGE): infl. by ME aknowen < OE oncnawan, to understand, know, with Latinized prefix] 1. to admit to be true or as stated;… …   English World dictionary

  • acknowledge — (v.) 1550s, a blend of Middle English aknow (from O.E. oncnawan understand, from on + cnawan recognize; see KNOW (Cf. know)) and Middle English knowlechen admit, acknowledge (c.1200; see KNOWLEDGE (Cf. knowledge)). In the merger, a parasitic c… …   Etymology dictionary

  • acknowledge — ► VERB 1) accept or admit the existence or truth of. 2) confirm receipt of or gratitude for. 3) greet with words or gestures. ORIGIN from the obsolete verb knowledge (in the same sense) …   English terms dictionary

  • acknowledge */*/ — UK [əkˈnɒlɪdʒ] / US [əkˈnɑlɪdʒ] verb [transitive] Word forms acknowledge : present tense I/you/we/they acknowledge he/she/it acknowledges present participle acknowledging past tense acknowledged past participle acknowledged 1) a) to accept or… …   English dictionary

  • acknowledge — ac|knowl|edge W3S3 [əkˈnɔlıdʒ US ˈna: ] v [T] ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(admit)¦ 2¦(recognize something s importance)¦ 3¦(accept somebody s authority)¦ 4¦(thank)¦ 5¦(show you notice somebody)¦ 6¦(say you have received something)¦ ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ [Date: 1400 1500; Origin …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • acknowledge — acknowledgeable, adj. acknowledger, n. /ak nol ij/, v.t., acknowledged, acknowledging. 1. to admit to be real or true; recognize the existence, truth, or fact of: to acknowledge one s mistakes. 2. to show or express recognition or realization of …   Universalium


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