AskDefine | Define confer

Dictionary Definition

confer adv : compare (used in texts to point the reader to another location in the text) [syn: cf., cf, see, see also]


1 have a conference in order to talk something over; "We conferred about a plan of action" [syn: confabulate, confab, consult]
2 present; "The university conferred a degree on its most famous former student, who never graduated"; "bestow an honor on someone" [syn: bestow] [also: conferring, conferred]

User Contributed Dictionary






  1. In the context of "obsolete|transitive": To bring together, collect
  2. To have discourse; to consult, discuss; to compare views; to deliberate.
  3. In the context of "obsolete|intransitive": To contribute (to); to conduce.
  4. To grant as a possession; to bestow.

See also


discuss, consult

Extensive Definition

cf. is an abbreviation for the Latin-derived (but also modern English) word confer, meaning "compare" or "consult". It is mainly used in common and statute law contexts as well as in academic writing.
Thus cf. is often used by authors in the text of their article or book to refer to other academic material which may provide auxiliary information or arguments to the understanding of theirs.
It is sometimes used (primarily in dictionaries) to imply insight into the preceding word's etymology — that is, to suggest how one term obtained its particular naming convention (perhaps from another phrase). For example, the phrase "Big Whack (cf. Big Bang)" suggests to the reader that the usage of the moniker (self-given nickname) "Big Whack" derives at least its name from the latter.
In the system of binomial nomenclature, the use of cf. is similarly used to indicate that the species needs to be seen in context of its comparison to another, but by definition is not confirmed as the same. For example Corvus cf. splendens indicates "a bird similar to the House Crow but not certainly identified as this species". For this reason many mistakenly believe that cf. is an abbreviated form of "confirmed" or "inconfirmatus" or the like.


confer in German: Zitat#Zitate_in_der_Wissenschaft
confer in Spanish: Véase
confer in French: Confer
confer in Hungarian: Vö.
confer in Dutch: Cf.

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abalienate, accord, administer, advise, advise with, advocate, afford, alien, alienate, allot, allow, amortize, argue, assign, award, bargain, barter, bequeath, bestow, bestow on, brief, call in, cede, chaffer, coach, collogue, communicate, compare notes, confab, confabulate, confer with, consign, consult, consult with, converse, convey, counsel, deal, deal out, debate, deed, deed over, deliberate, deliver, demise, devolve upon, direct, discuss, discuss with, dish out, dispense, dole, dole out, donate, enfeoff, exchange, exchange observations, exchange views, extend, fork out, gift, gift with, give, give freely, give out, give title to, grant, guide, hand, hand down, hand on, hand out, hand over, have conversations, heap, help to, hold conference, huddle, impart, instruct, issue, kibitz, lavish, let have, make over, meddle, mete, mete out, negotiate, offer, palaver, parley, pass, pass on, pass over, pour, powwow, prescribe, present, proffer, propose, provide, put heads together, rain, reason with, recommend, refer to, render, sell, serve, settle, settle on, shell out, shower, sign away, sign over, sit down together, sit down with, slip, snow, speak, submit, suggest, surrender, take counsel, take up with, talk, talk over, tender, trade, transfer, transmit, treat, turn over, vouchsafe, yield
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