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A confession is a statement made by a person or a group of person acknowledging some personal fact that the person (or the group) would not prefer to keep hidden. The term is generally associated with an admission of a moral or legal wrong. A legal confession is an admission of some wrongdoing that has legal consequence, while a confession in religion is usually more akin to a ritual by which the person acknowledges thoughts or actions considered sinful or morally wrong within the confines of the confessor's religion. Socially, however, the term may refer to admissions that are neither legally nor religiously significant.
The term derives from "something (“ion”) spoken (“fess”) in the presence of or with (“con”) someone else".
- Steven M. Cerutti, The Words of the Day: The Unlikely Evolution of Common English (2006), p. 37.