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- Created 2012-03-07
are words with the same or similar meanings. Words that are synonyms are said to be
, and the state of being a synonym is called
. The word comes from
) ("with") and
) ("name"). An example of synonyms are the words
. Likewise, if we talk about a
become synonyms. In the figurative sense, two words are often said to be synonymous if they have the same connotation:
:"a widespread impression that... Hollywood was synonymous with immorality" (
Doris Kearns Goodwin
Synonyms can be any
part of speech
s), as long as both words are the same part of speech. Here are more examples of English synonyms:
"buy" and "purchase"
"big" and "large"
"quickly" and "speedily"
"on" and "upon"
Note that synonyms are defined with respect to certain senses of words; for instance,
"aperture in the iris of the eye"
is not synonymous with
means the same as
my passport has expired
cannot be replaced by
my passport has died
In English, many synonyms emerged in the
, after the
Norman conquest of England
's new ruling class spoke
, the lower classes continued to speak
(Anglo-Saxon). Thus, today we have synonyms like the Norman-derived
, and the Saxon-derived
. For more examples, see the
list of Germanic and Latinate equivalents in English
s claim that no synonyms have exactly the same meaning (in all contexts or social levels of language) because
, phonic qualities, ambiguous meanings, usage, etc. make them unique. Different words that are similar in meaning usually differ for a reason:
is more formal than
are only synonyms in one usage and not in others (for example, a
is not the same as an
). Synonyms are also a source of
The purpose of a
is to offer the user a listing of similar or related words; these are often, but not always, synonyms.
from Wikipedia (last updated: 13 June), licensed under
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how to say
Free Online English Thesaurus and Dictionary.
English Synonym Dictionary
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