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[uh-surt] /əˈsɜrt/
verb (used with object)
to state with assurance, confidence, or force; state strongly or positively; affirm; aver:
He asserted his innocence of the crime.
to maintain or defend (claims, rights, etc.).
to state as having existence; affirm; postulate:
to assert a first cause as necessary.
assert oneself, to insist on one's rights, declare one's views forcefully, etc.:
The candidate finally asserted himself about property taxes.
Origin of assert
1595-1605; < Latin assertus joined to, defended, claimed (past participle of asserere), equivalent to as- as- + ser- (see series) + -tus past participle suffix
Related forms
asserter, assertor, noun
assertible, adjective
misassert, verb (used with object)
overassert, verb (used with object)
preassert, verb (used with object)
reassert, verb (used with object)
1. asseverate, avow, maintain. See declare. 2. uphold, support. See maintain.
1. deny. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for assert oneself
Historical Examples
  • The desire to assert oneself is no less powerful, in the social interplay, than the impulse to submission.

  • How is one to intimidate, persuade, resist, assert oneself against them?

    Victory Joseph Conrad
  • One had to say something if only to assert oneself against that wearisome, passionless and crushing uproar.

    Chance Joseph Conrad
  • It may be needful, on occasion, to assert oneself, or at least one's authority; but it is difficult to do it without sin.

  • At my age,” she straightened herself proudly, “one must assert oneself!

    The Love Affairs of Pixie Mrs George de Horne Vaizey
  • I believe in such a place as London unless one has resolution to assert oneself people think one is a sort of shadow.

    The Way of Ambition Robert Hichens
  • To exist is to assert oneself, to affirm oneself, to love oneself; he to whom life is a burthen rids himself of it.

    The Essence of Christianity Ludwig Feuerbach
British Dictionary definitions for assert oneself


verb (transitive)
to insist upon (rights, claims, etc)
(may take a clause as object) to state to be true; declare categorically
to put (oneself) forward in an insistent manner
Derived Forms
asserter, assertor, noun
assertible, adjective
Word Origin
C17: from Latin asserere to join to oneself, from serere to join
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for assert oneself



c.1600, "declare," from Latin assertus, past participle of asserere "claim, maintain, affirm" (see assertion). Related: Asserted; asserting. To assert oneself "stand up for one's rights" is recorded from 1879.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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