Etymology
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Words related to certain

*krei- 
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to sieve," thus "discriminate, distinguish."

It forms all or part of: ascertain; certain; concern; concert; crime; criminal; crisis; critic; criterion; decree; diacritic; discern; disconcert; discreet; discriminate; endocrine; excrement; excrete; garble; hypocrisy; incertitude; recrement; recriminate; riddle (n.2) "coarse sieve;" secret; secretary.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Greek krinein "to separate, decide, judge," krinesthai "to explain;" Latin cribrum "sieve," crimen "judgment, crime," cernere "to sift, distinguish, separate;" Old Irish criathar, Old Welsh cruitr "sieve;" Middle Irish crich "border, boundary;" Old English hriddel "sieve."
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crisis (n.)

early 15c., crise, crisis, "decisive point in the progress of a disease," also "vitally important or decisive state of things, point at which change must come, for better or worse," from Latinized form of Greek krisis "turning point in a disease, that change which indicates recovery or death" (used as such by Hippocrates and Galen), literally "judgment, result of a trial, selection," from krinein "to separate, decide, judge," from PIE root *krei- "to sieve," thus "discriminate, distinguish."

Transferred non-medical sense is 1620s in English. A German term for "mid-life crisis" is Torschlusspanik, literally "shut-door-panic," fear of being on the wrong side of a closing gate.

ascertain (v.)
early 15c., "to inform, to give assurance" (a sense now obsolete), from Anglo-French acerteiner, Old French acertener "to assure, certify" (13c.), from a- "to" (see ad-) + certain "sure, assured" (see certain). Meaning "find out for sure by experiment or investigation" is first attested 1794. Related: Ascertained; ascertaining.
certainly (adv.)

"without doubt or question, assuredly," c. 1300, from certain + -ly (2).

certainty (n.)

c. 1300, certeynte, "surety, pledge," from Anglo-French certeinté (late 13c.), Old French certainete "certainty," from Latin or Vulgar Latin *certanitatem (source of Old Spanish certanedad), from Vulgar Latin *certanus (see certain). Meaning "that which is certain, a clear fact or truth" is attested from early 14c.; meaning "quality or fact of being certain; full assurance of mind, exemption from doubt" is from early 15c.

certes (adv.)

"certainly, verily, in truth," mid-13c., from Old French certes, from Vulgar Latin *certas, from Latin certe, adverb from certus "fixed, certain" (see certain).

certify (v.)

mid-14c., "to declare the truth of," also "to vouch for or confirm" (an official record, etc.), from Old French certefiier "make certain, witness the truth of" (12c.), from Late Latin certificare "to certify, to make certain," from Latin certus "fixed, sure" (see certain) + root of facere "to make, do" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put"). Also used in Middle English in broader senses of "inform, give notice to; instruct, to direct; to designate." Related: Certified; certifying.

certitude (n.)

"certainty, complete assurance," early 15c., from Old French certitude "certainty" and directly from Late Latin certitudinem (nominative certitudo) "that which is certain," from Latin certus "sure, certain" (see certain).

certorari (n.)

"writ from superior to inferior courts seeking the records of a case," legal Latin, "to be certified, to be informed or shown," a word figuring in the opening phrase of such writs; passive present infinitive of certorare "to certify, inform," from certior, comparative of certus "sure" (see certain).

incertitude (n.)

mid-15c., "variability," from Old French incertitude (14c.), from Late Latin incertitudinem (nominative incertitudo) "uncertainty," from in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + certitudo "that which is certain," from Latin certus "sure, certain" (see certain). From c. 1600 as "doubt, hesitation." Middle English also had incertain "uncertain" and incertainty "uncertainty," both from Old French, but both have been displaced by forms in un-.