Also found in: Thesaurus.


 (prə-fĕs′, prō-)
v. pro·fessed, pro·fess·ing, pro·fess·es
1. To affirm openly; declare or claim: "a physics major [who] professes to be a stickler when it comes to data" (Gina Maranto).
2. To make a pretense of; pretend: "top officials who were deeply involved with the arms sales but later professed ignorance of them" (David Johnston).
3. To practice as a profession or claim knowledge of: profess medicine.
4. To affirm belief in: profess Catholicism.
5. To receive into a religious order or congregation.
1. To make an open affirmation.
2. To take the vows of a religious order or congregation.

[Middle English professen, to take vows, from Old French profes, that has taken a religious vow (from Medieval Latin professus, avowed) and from Medieval Latin professāre, to administer a vow, both from Latin professus, past participle of profitērī, to affirm openly : pro-, forth; see pro-1 + fatērī, to acknowledge; see bhā- in Indo-European roots.]

pro·fess′ed·ly (-fĕs′ĭd-lē) adv.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.professing - an open avowal (true or false) of some belief or opinion; "a profession of disagreement"
affirmation, avouchment, avowal - a statement asserting the existence or the truth of something
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
SOCRATES: And is there anything else of which the professors are affirmed not only not to be teachers of others, but to be ignorant themselves, and bad at the knowledge of that which they are professing to teach?
The pitiable lot is that of the man who could not call himself a martyr even though he were to persuade himself that the men who stoned him were but ugly passions incarnate--who knows that he is stoned, not for professing the Right, but for not being the man he professed to be.
They are they who are represented as professing to love God whom they have not seen, whilst they hate their brother whom they have seen.
But Rose was wide-awake, and escaped all his snares, professing great contempt for such foolish customs.
Lynn grudgingly boards a plane, professing only distaste for her native town--its dryness and strip malls and lack of culture, the place where her father died of heart failure.
It is a testimony to Wojtyla's courage that he persevered in his faith despite the dark times in which openly professing religious beliefs could easily lead to imprisonment or execution at the hands of the authorities.
From the outset, Hall indicates that this work is not a summary of what he has already articulated in his trilogy (Thinking the Faith [1989], Professing the Faith [1993], and Confessing the Faith [1996]).
This is how the shepherd loses his life for the flock of Christ entrusted to him, by boldly professing the truth when his silence will only injure his flock.
Still bearing the scars of evolutionary teaching he endured in his days as a Florida State student, Baxley last spring introduced a bill that would prevent teachers from punishing students for professing beliefs with which teachers disagree, and advise professors to teach alternative "serious academic theories."
Canada is definitely at the forefront in professing and acting upon Jesus' second great commandment.
Welsh speakers seem to be more devotional than non-Welsh speakers, 57% professing belief in contrast to 53% of non-Welsh speakers.
To take another example, in a critical section of the book Hoyle reinterprets the actions of Thomas, Lord Darcy, usually seen by historians as a minor noble who played a double game, professing loyalty to Henry VIII while encouraging the rebels.