A synonym is a word that means the same, or almost the same thing, as another word.

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8answers
11k views

When did the term “flip flop” displace the term “thong” in North America for a type of sandal?

To Australians like me "thong" means a kind of sandal such as recently repopularized by the Havaianas brand but we know it means a kind of G-string in other English-speaking parts of the world. To ...
14
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7answers
3k views

What is the English synonym for the German word “Sparmeister”?

Well, the title pretty much says it all. A Sparmeister (noun), briefly speaking, is a person who is concerned about his finances and tries to avoid spending money whenever possible. a ...
14
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9answers
34k views

Is there a more concise term for a long-term girlfriend/boyfriend than “significant other”?

I've been together with my boyfriend for around 9 years now. There are times when I want to communicate that I am referring to someone who plays a major role in my life, like that of a husband, and ...
14
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3answers
2k views

Can one “decrease” or “increase” sound volume?

My daughter's English teacher insists that synonyms for "turn up" and "turn down" (volume)do not include the words increase and decrease. We wondered if we had been using increase and decrease ...
14
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7answers
17k views

When is it appropriate to use “Yeah” and “Yep” as variants of the word “Yes”?

As a learner of English I know that yes is a standard variant and other two are informal, spoken words. I know nothing more about it, and try always use the yes variant, just not to sound ...
14
votes
2answers
3k views

Envision vs Envisage

Is there a context where envision is not a synonym of envisage, or vice versa? Envisage's definition: contemplate or conceive of as a possibility or a desirable future event Envision's ...
13
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6answers
3k views

What is a word for a person who thinks they are going to fail? [closed]

I need a word for someone who thinks that they won't become successful or will fail?
13
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9answers
2k views

What do you call something that is not first in a sequence?

Is there a word to describe something that is not the first element in a sequence, but can be in any other position? A synonym of "not first", in fact. This element is __ in this sequence.
13
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6answers
17k views

What is a less offensive synonym for “hypocrite”?

Is there a word that describe a person who doesn't "practice what they preach"? Basically, is there a synonym for "hypocrite" that carries less pejorative connotations? For example, let's say a ...
13
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8answers
2k views

Are all myths superstitions, or are all superstitions myths?

Are all myths superstitions, or is it the other way around, i.e. all superstition being myths? Or can these words basically be used interchangeably? The dictionary definitions of these words seem ...
13
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4answers
62k views

“flat” vs. “apartment”

Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, 8th edition Flat: noun. [ countable ] ( BrE ) a set of rooms for living in, including a kitchen, usually on one floor of a building. Apartment: noun. ( ...
13
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8answers
1k views

Single word for shopping after comparing price and features across multiple shops and product types

I'm looking for a phrase or a single word that denotes the act of buying an item after analyzing the price and features of different products across several shops. The closest I could get to was ...
12
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11answers
2k views

Cases where “mistake” and “error” are not interchangeable

Are there cases where error and mistake are not interchangeable?
12
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14answers
2k views

A less hostile word that can replace “violation”

I am working with a large open source software project whose code base has to be GNU Public License version 2 (GPLv2). We have to make sure that the "stuff" that goes into the project from our ...
12
votes
14answers
3k views

More concise word or phrase for “people who have been taken advantage of”

I’m hoping for a single descriptive word for “people who have been taken advantage of”, but a shorter phrase would be ok. These are people who now have a lack of trust and are in need of loyalty in ...
12
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8answers
2k views

“Lover of Life”: Biophile?

Looking for a single noun to title a funeral picture board where photos show the subject dancing, eating, drinking, reading, and laughing. I want to portray this man's love of life. Other photo ...
12
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7answers
1k views

Other ways to say “I have a bad hunch”

I'm looking for ways to say "I'm having a bad hunch", or more like a bad feeling about something upcoming. The gut-wrenching feeling that something bad will happen.
12
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12answers
1k views

Professional term for “useless: should be omitted”

I need a way to say something is useless, in that including it is actually harmful, but not so harshly. As in, "The last sentence is useless and should be omitted" Where the last sentence in a ...
12
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5answers
66k views

Popular alternatives to “thank you”

The context for my question might be a bit strange. I have stuttering and therefore I have some difficulties pronouncing some words starting with particular phonetics. And I've found that if a ...
12
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7answers
19k views

Are there any differences between “I believe” vs “I think” vs “I reckon”?

These are the three most common ways to say "I think." (At least, I believe so. I mean, I think so. Um...) Are there any subtle differences between them? Are there situations where one of the three ...
12
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9answers
1k views

Safer alternative to “opaque”?

As a child I was taught that opaque means doesn't let any light through at all, as opposed to translucent (lets some light through, but diffused/frosted) or transparent (completely clear, lets you see ...
12
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4answers
3k views

“Obvious” vs. “Evident”

Are obvious and evident totally synonymous? I've noticed that both are generally translated to the same French word. However, as a native English speaker I kinda interpret them differently; obvious ...
12
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2answers
4k views

Enquire and inquire

In British English I think these two words have different shades of meaning, but I couldn't articulate them. In American English I see inquire used where I would use "enquire". Are there shades of ...
12
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1answer
62k views

What is the difference between “in-between” and “between”?

Do in-between and between have different meanings? What is the difference between in-between and between?
12
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6answers
22k views

When is it appropriate to use “titled” vs. “entitled”?

When is it appropriate to use "titled" vs. "entitled"? For example, which is the correct word to use in the following sentence? I really liked the conclusion to rands’ latest blog post entitled ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the word to mean to apply attributes of an entire race to a single individual?

Normally racism is used to mean generalizing about an entire race based on a few individual examples, but what is the word to mean to apply attributes of an entire race to a single individual? That is ...
11
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5answers
48k views

What is the difference between “rooster” vs. “cock” and “hen” vs. “chicken”?

When I was small and started to study English, I had pictures labelled cock, hen and chicken. Now when I search the net for pictures for showing to my children, I see the same pictures, but this ...
11
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5answers
19k views

“Miniscule” vs. “minuscule”

Does the former have a typo or are they synonyms? Do they always have the same meaning? Please enlighten me as I am confused on this matter.
11
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6answers
13k views

What is the difference between “citizen” and “denizen”

Citizen: 1. A legally recognized subject ornational of a state or commonwealth, either native or naturalized. 2. An inhabitant of a particular town or city. Denizen: 1. An inhabitant or occupant of a ...
11
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6answers
97k views

Synonym for “such as”

As in: Many factors are to blame for this disaster, such as: «bulleted list»
11
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15answers
78k views

What is the adjective form for the word “integrity?”

I'm looking for the adjective form of "integrity." Instead of "Be a person of integrity," I'd like to say something like "Be [one word I'm looking for]" I did a Google search for this, but I also ...
11
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5answers
20k views

Are there by chance any synonyms for “synonym”?

I was discussing with some friends about synonyms when we found, that ironically nobody of us knew any synonyms to the word "synonym" itself. Are there any?
11
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5answers
5k views

“high rate of speed” or “high speed” to mean going fast

Why do reporters (and sometimes police officers) say that somebody was going at a high rate of speed when they actually mean high speed? In physics, speed is already the rate of distance over time, ...
11
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3answers
2k views

The use of “random” to mean “arbitrary”, “unidentified”, “unknown”, etc

I'm seeing the use of "random" instead of "arbitrary", etc., with increasing frequency. To me, "random" has a specific meaning and is not synonymous with these other words. Is it correct to use it in ...
10
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6answers
3k views

Synonym of “s--t eating grin” suitable for polite company

Can anyone think of a synonym for "shit eating grin" that would be usable in polite company? This definition from the OED captures the meaning I'm looking for perfectly: A broad grin expressing ...
10
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6answers
4k views

A better word for invigilator, a person overseeing an exam

I'm issuing a written final exam to a student in Nepal. In setting this up I need to communicate to a non native speaking person in the abroad administration, in a clear and precise manner, that a ...
10
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1answer
2k views

“brake the rules” vs “break the rules”

In a shop I have found a T-shirt with the sentence: "Brake the rules" (not "Break the rules"). Is it correct?
10
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9answers
3k views

What is a good word for a person who doesn't masturbate?

Is there a word for a person who doesn't masturbate? If so, what would he/she/it be known as?
10
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11answers
48k views

What is a good synonym for “interesting”?

What's a good synonym for the word "interesting" or "interested"? I find that I use those words a bit too often (e.g. "I'm definitely interested!", "Yeah, that sounds really interesting, I would love ...
10
votes
3answers
14k views

Difference between “Excuse me” and “Sorry”

What is the difference between "Excuse me, ..." and "Sorry, ..."? When do we use one or the other? For example, when you haven't heard the speaker, or stepped on someone's foot or accidentally ...
10
votes
8answers
3k views

Word for “decorated too much”

I'm looking for a word (verb) meaning decorate/embellish too much — in a bad sense — and in particular having the tint of being too much so that something instead of being beautiful becomes fussy and ...
10
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4answers
13k views

Is there a difference between “Speciality” and “Specialty”?

My work colleagues and I have been having a discussion about doctors (we work in healthcare), and we're split down the middle as to whether a specialist doctor would have a speciality, or a specialty ...
10
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8answers
3k views

Is there a similar word to 'twain' but meaning 'three' instead of 'two'?

I would like to split something into three parts, is there a phrase I can use with similar overtones to "cleave in twain"?
10
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3answers
121k views

When should you use “despite” over “inspite”, and vice versa?

Most dictionaries suggest that inspite and despite are synonymous, but are there any specific instances when their usage is not interchangeable?
10
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3answers
13k views

“To date” versus “until now”

Is there a difference between these two expressions? Are they perfect synonyms?
10
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4answers
5k views

Which word is used more in the UK: 'gaol' or 'jail'?

I know both words share the same meaning and pronunciation, but I wonder about their comparative usage in modern English.
10
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6answers
4k views

What is the “explicit”'s equivalent of “imply”?

Note: The original title of this question was "Why is 'exply' not a word? While considering the words implicit, implicate, and imply, it struck me that I can't think of an equivalent to imply for ...
10
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5answers
3k views

What words sound like opposites but are synonyms?

Somewhat related to this question, I am curious to know what words in English would seem to be opposites at first blush but are in fact synonyms? Immediately I can think of flammable and inflammable. ...
10
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5answers
16k views

Differences between “propensity”, “predilection” and “proclivity”

Propensity, predilection and proclivity all have the meaning of tendency, so what's the difference? Are they interchangeable?
9
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9answers
2k views

American Equivalent of “Bog Standard”

I'm searching for an American English phrase that is the most readily equivalent to the British expression bog standard (which means, as I understand, plain, ordinary or unremarkable). I'm tempted to ...