Language tip of the week: sure

Posted by on August 01, 2013

Learn English with Macmillan DictionaryIn this weekly post, we bring more useful content from the Macmillan Dictionary to English language learners. These tips are usually based on areas of English which learners find difficult, e.g. spelling, grammar, collocation, synonyms, etc.

This week’s language tip helps with ways in which you can express that you feel sure about something:

I’m sure: the most usual way of saying that you are sure about something
I’m positive/I’m certain/I know for a fact (that): a stronger, more emphatic way of expressing certainty
I know: used for expressing certainty that something will happen, based on a strong feeling rather than on facts
I bet: used informally to show that you are confident about the truth of what you are saying
no doubt: a more formal way of expressing certainty about what someone is thinking or feeling, often used by people in authority
I am satisfied: a way of expressing certainty about the facts of a situation, often used in official situations

Examples:
I’m sure she won’t forget – she’s very reliable.
I’m positive I had the keys with me when I left. ♦ We’re certain we made the right decision. ♦ I know for a fact that he lied to me about the party.
You’re going to enjoy the show – I just know you are.
I bet they’ve gone without us! ♦ I bet he’s not as good a cook as you.
You will no doubt be relieved to hear that the management has agreed to your request.
Having examined the evidence, we are satisfied that safety regulations were not broken.

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