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]
- Rhymes: -ɜː(r)
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.
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