HotFreeBooks.com
English Synonyms and Antonyms - With Notes on the Correct Use of Prepositions
by James Champlin Fernald
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

Antonyms:

adroit, clever, dexterous, handy, skilful.

Prepositions:

The raw recruit is awkward in action; at the business.

* * * * *

AXIOM.

Synonym:

truism.

Both the axiom and the truism are instantly seen to be true, and need no proof; but in an axiom there is progress of thought, while the truism simply says the same thing over again, or says what is too manifest to need saying. The axiom that "things which are equal to the same thing are equal to one another" unfolds in the latter part of the sentence the truth implied in the first part, which might have been overlooked if not stated. In the truism that "a man can do all he is capable of," the former and the latter part of the sentence are simply identical, and the mind is left just where it started. Hence the axiom is valuable and useful, while the truism is weak and flat, unless the form of statement makes it striking or racy, as "all fools are out of their wits." Compare PROVERB.

Antonyms:

absurdity, contradiction, demonstration, nonsense, paradox, sophism.

* * * * *

BABBLE.

Synonyms:

blab, cackle, gabble, murmur, prattle, blurt, chat, gossip, palaver, tattle, blurt out, chatter, jabber, prate, twaddle.

Most of these words are onomatopoetic. The cackle of a hen, the gabble of a goose, the chatter of a magpie, the babble of a running stream, as applied to human speech, indicate a rapid succession of what are to the listener meaningless sounds. Blab and blurt (commonly blurt out) refer to the letting out of what the lips can no longer keep in; blab, of a secret; blurt out, of passionate feeling. To chat is to talk in an easy, pleasant way, not without sense, but without special purpose. Chatting is the practise of adults, prattling that of children. To prate is to talk idly, presumptuously, or foolishly, but not necessarily incoherently. To jabber is to utter a rapid succession of unintelligible sounds, generally more noisy than chattering. To gossip is to talk of petty personal matters, as for pastime or mischief. To twaddle is to talk feeble nonsense. To murmur is to utter suppressed or even inarticulate sounds, suggesting the notes of a dove, or the sound of a running stream, and is used figuratively of the half suppressed utterances of affection or pity, or of complaint, resentment, etc. Compare SPEAK.

Prepositions:

Babies babble for the moon; the crowd babbles of a hero; the sick man babbles of home.

* * * * *

BANISH.

Synonyms:

ban, dismiss, evict, expatriate, ostracize, discharge, drive out, exile, expel, oust. dislodge, eject,

Banish, primarily to put under ban, to compel by authority to leave a place or country, perhaps with restriction to some other place or country. From a country, a person may be banished, exiled, or expatriated; banished from any country where he may happen to be, but expatriated or exiled only from his own. One may expatriate or exile himself; he is banished by others. Banish is a word of wide import; one may banish disturbing thoughts; care may banish sleep. To expel is to drive out with violence or rudeness, and so often with disgrace.

Prepositions:

Cataline was banished from Rome; John the Apostle was banished to Patmos.

* * * * *

BANK.

Synonyms:

beach, bound, brink, edge, margin, shore, border, brim, coast, marge, rim, strand.

Bank is a general term for the land along the edge of a water course; it may also denote a raised portion of the bed of a river, lake, or ocean; as, the Banks of Newfoundland. A beach is a strip or expanse of incoherent wave-worn sand, which is often pebbly or full of boulders; we speak of the beach of a lake or ocean; a beach is sometimes found in the bend of a river. Strand is a more poetic term for a wave-washed shore, especially as a place for landing or embarking; as, the keel grates on the strand. The whole line of a country or continent that borders the sea is a coast. Shore is any land, whether cliff, or sand, or marsh, bordering water. We do not speak of the coast of a river, nor of the banks of the ocean, tho there may be banks by or under the sea. Edge is the line where land and water meet; as, the water's edge. Brink is the place from which one may fall; as, the river's brink; the brink of a precipice; the brink of ruin.

* * * * *

BANTER.

Synonyms:

badinage, derision, jeering, raillery, sarcasm, chaff, irony, mockery, ridicule, satire.

Banter is the touching upon some fault, weakness, or fancied secret of another in a way half to pique and half to please; badinage is delicate, refined banter. Raillery has more sharpness, but is usually good-humored and well meant. Irony, the saying one thing that the reverse may be understood, may be either mild or bitter. All the other words have a hostile intent. Ridicule makes a person or thing the subject of contemptuous merriment; derision seeks to make the object derided seem utterly despicable—to laugh it to scorn. Chaff is the coarse witticism of the streets, perhaps merry, oftener malicious; jeering is loud, rude ridicule, as of a hostile crowd or mob. Mockery is more studied, and may include mimicry and personal violence, as well as scornful speech. A satire is a formal composition; a sarcasm may be an impromptu sentence. The satire shows up follies to keep people from them; the sarcasm hits them because they are foolish, without inquiring whether it will do good or harm; the satire is plainly uttered; the sarcasm is covert.

* * * * *

BARBAROUS.

Synonyms:

atrocious, brutal, merciless, uncivilized, barbarian, cruel, rude, uncouth, barbaric, inhuman, savage, untamed.

Whatever is not civilized is barbarian; barbaric indicates rude magnificence, uncultured richness; as, barbaric splendor, a barbaric melody. Barbarous refers to the worst side of barbarian life, and to revolting acts, especially of cruelty, such as a civilized man would not be expected to do; as, a barbarous deed. We may, however, say barbarous nations, barbarous tribes, without implying anything more than want of civilization and culture. Savage is more distinctly bloodthirsty than barbarous. In this sense we speak of a savage beast and of barbarous usage.

Antonyms:

civilized, cultured, elegant, humane, polite, tender, courtly, delicate, graceful, nice, refined, urbane.

* * * * *

BARRIER.

Synonyms:

bar, bulwark, obstruction, rampart, barricade, hindrance, parapet, restraint, breastwork, obstacle, prohibition, restriction.

A bar is something that is or may be firmly fixed, ordinarily with intent to prevent entrance or egress; as, the bars of a prison cell; the bars of a wood-lot. A barrier obstructs, but is not necessarily impassable. Barrier is used of objects more extensive than those to which bar is ordinarily applied. A mountain range may be a barrier to exploration; but a mass of sand across the entrance to a harbor is called a bar. Discovered falsehood is a bar to confidence. Barricade has become practically a technical name for an improvised street fortification, and, unless in some way modified, is usually so understood. A parapet is a low or breast-high wall, as about the edge of a roof, terrace, etc., especially, in military use, such a wall for the protection of troops; a rampart is the embankment surrounding a fort, on which the parapet is raised; the word rampart is often used as including the parapet. Bulwark is a general word for any defensive wall or rampart; its only technical use at present is in nautical language, where it signifies the raised side of a ship above the upper deck, topped by the rail. Compare BOUNDARY; IMPEDIMENT.

Antonyms:

admittance, opening, road, transit, entrance, passage, thoroughfare, way.

Prepositions:

A barrier to progress, against invasion; a barrier between nations.

* * * * *

BATTLE.

Synonyms:

action, combat, encounter, passage of arms, affair, conflict, engagement, skirmish, bout, contest, fight, strife.

Conflict is a general word which describes opponents, whether individuals or hosts, as dashed together. One continuous conflict between entire armies is a battle. Another battle may be fought upon the same field after a considerable interval; or a new battle may follow immediately, the armies meeting upon a new field. An action is brief and partial; a battle may last for days. Engagement is a somewhat formal expression for battle; as, it was the commander's purpose to avoid a general engagement. A protracted war, including many battles, may be a stubborn contest. Combat, originally a hostile encounter between individuals, is now used also for extensive engagements. A skirmish is between small detachments or scattered troops. An encounter may be either purposed or accidental, between individuals or armed forces. Fight is a word of less dignity than battle; we should not ordinarily speak of Waterloo as a fight, unless where the word is used in the sense of fighting; as, I was in the thick of the fight.

Antonyms:

armistice, concord, peace, suspension of hostilities, truce.

Prepositions:

A battle of giants; battle between armies; a battle for life, against invaders; a battle to the death; the battle of (more rarely at) Marathon.

* * * * *

BEAT.

Synonyms:

bastinado, chastise, overcome, spank, thrash, batter, conquer, pommel, strike, vanquish, belabor, cudgel, pound, surpass, whip, bruise, defeat, scourge, switch, worst. castigate, flog, smite,

Strike is the word for a single blow; to beat is to strike repeatedly, as a bird beats the air with its wings. Others of the above words describe the manner of beating, as bastinado, to beat on the soles of the feet; belabor, to inflict a comprehensive and exhaustive beating; cudgel, to beat with a stick; thrash, as wheat was beaten out with the old hand-flail; to pound (akin to L. pondus, a weight) is to beat with a heavy, and pommel with a blunt, instrument. To batter and to bruise refer to the results of beating; that is battered which is broken or defaced by repeated blows on the surface (compare synonyms for SHATTER); that is bruised which has suffered even one severe contusion. The metaphorical sense of beat, however, so far preponderates that one may be very badly bruised and battered, and yet not be said to be beaten, unless he has got the worst of the beating. To beat a combatant is to disable or dishearten him for further fighting. Hence beat becomes the synonym for every word which implies getting the advantage of another. Compare CONQUER.

Antonyms:

fail, fall, get the worst of, go down, go under, surrender.

Almost all antonyms in this class are passive, and can be formed indefinitely from the conquering words by the use of the auxiliary be; as, be beaten, be defeated, be conquered, etc.

Prepositions:

Beat with a stick over the head; beat by a trick; out of town; beat to the ground; into submission.

* * * * *

BEAUTIFUL.

Synonyms:

attractive, charming, exquisite, handsome, beauteous, comely, fair, lovely, bewitching, delightful, fine, picturesque, bonny, elegant, graceful, pretty.

The definition of beauty, "perfection of form," is a good key to the meaning of beautiful, if we understand "form" in its widest sense. There must also be harmony and unity, and in human beings spiritual loveliness, to constitute an object or a person really beautiful. Thus, we speak of a beautiful landscape, a beautiful poem. But beautiful implies also, in concrete objects, softness of outline and delicacy of mold; it is opposed to all that is hard and rugged, hence we say a beautiful woman, but not a beautiful man. Beautiful has the further limit of not transcending our powers of appreciation. Pretty expresses in a far less degree that which is pleasing to a refined taste in objects comparatively small, slight, and dainty; as, a pretty bonnet; a pretty girl. That is handsome which is not only superficially pleasing, but well and harmoniously proportioned, with usually the added idea that it is made so by art, breeding, or training; as, a handsome horse; a handsome house. Handsome is a term far inferior to beautiful; we may even say a handsome villain. Fair denotes what is bright, smooth, clear, and without blemish; as, a fair face. The word applies wholly to what is superficial; we can say "fair, yet false." In a specific sense, fair has the sense of blond, as opposed to dark or brunette. One who possesses vivacity, wit, good nature, or other pleasing qualities may be attractive without beauty. Comely denotes an aspect that is smooth, genial, and wholesome, with a certain fulness of contour and pleasing symmetry, tho falling short of the beautiful; as, a comely matron. That is picturesque which would make a striking picture.

Antonyms:

awkward, frightful, grotesque, repulsive, uncouth, clumsy, ghastly, hideous, shocking, ungainly, deformed, grim, horrid, ugly, unlovely, disgusting, grisly, odious, unattractive, unpleasant.

Prepositions:

Beautiful to the eye; beautiful in appearance, in spirit; "beautiful for situation," Ps. xlviii, 2; beautiful of aspect, of its kind.

* * * * *

BECAUSE.

Synonyms:

as, for, inasmuch as, since.

Because, literally by-cause, is the most direct and complete word for giving the reason of a thing. Since, originally denoting succession in time, signifies a succession in a chain of reasoning, a natural inference or result. As indicates something like, coordinate, parallel. Since is weaker than because; as is weaker than since; either may introduce the reason before the main statement; thus, since or as you are going, I will accompany you. Often the weaker word is the more courteous, implying less constraint; for example, as you request it, I will come, rather than I will come because you request it. Inasmuch as is a formal and qualified expression, implying by just so much, and no more; thus, inasmuch as the debtor has no property, I abandon the claim. For is a loose connective, giving often mere suggestion or indication rather than reason or cause; as, it is morning, for (not because) the birds are singing.

Antonyms:

altho, however, nevertheless, notwithstanding, yet.

Compare synonyms for BUT; NOTWITHSTANDING.

* * * * *

BECOMING.

Synonyms:

befitting, congruous, fit, meet, seemly, beseeming, decent, fitting, neat, suitable, comely, decorous, graceful, proper, worthy.

That is becoming in dress which suits the complexion, figure, and other qualities of the wearer, so as to produce on the whole a pleasing effect. That is decent which does not offend modesty or propriety. That is suitable which is adapted to the age, station, situation, and other circumstances of the wearer; coarse, heavy boots are suitable for farm-work; a juvenile style of dress is not suitable for an old lady. In conduct much the same rules apply. The dignity and gravity of a patriarch would not be becoming to a child; at a funeral lively, cheery sociability would not be decorous, while noisy hilarity would not be decent; sumptuous display would not be suitable for a poor person. Fit is a compendious term for whatever fits the person, time, place, occasion, etc.; as, a fit person; a fit abode; a fit place. Fitting, or befitting, is somewhat more elegant, implying a nicer adaptation. Meet, a somewhat archaic word, expresses a moral fitness; as, meet for heaven. Compare BEAUTIFUL.

Antonyms:

awkward, ill-fitting, indecent, unbecoming, unseemly, ill-becoming, improper, indecorous, unfit, unsuitable.

Prepositions:

The dress was becoming to the wearer. Such conduct was becoming in him.

* * * * *

BEGINNING.

Synonyms:

arising, inauguration, origin, source, commencement, inception, outset, spring, fount, initiation, rise, start. fountain, opening,

The Latin commencement is more formal than the Saxon beginning, as the verb commence, is more formal than begin. Commencement is for the most part restricted to some form of action, while beginning has no restriction, but may be applied to action, state, material, extent, enumeration, or to whatever else may be conceived of as having a first part, point, degree, etc. The letter A is at the beginning (not the commencement) of every alphabet. If we were to speak of the commencement of the Pacific Railroad, we should be understood to refer to the enterprise and its initiatory act; if we were to refer to the roadway we should say "Here is the beginning of the Pacific Railroad." In the great majority of cases begin and beginning are preferable to commence and commencement as the simple, idiomatic English words, always accurate and expressive. "In the beginning was the word," John i, 1. An origin is the point from which something starts or sets out, often involving, and always suggesting causal connection; as, the origin of evil; the origin of a nation, a government, or a family. A source is that which furnishes a first and continuous supply, that which flows forth freely or may be readily recurred to; as, the source of a river; a source of knowledge; a source of inspiration; fertile land is a source (not an origin) of wealth. A rise is thought of as in an action; we say that a lake is the source of a certain river, or that the river takes its rise from the lake. Motley wrote of "The Rise of the Dutch Republic." Fount, fountain, and spring, in their figurative senses, keep close to their literal meaning. Compare CAUSE.

Antonyms:

See synonyms for END.

* * * * *

BEHAVIOR.

Synonyms:

action, breeding, conduct, deportment, manner, bearing, carriage, demeanor, life, manners.

Behavior is our action in the presence of others; conduct includes also that which is known only to ourselves and our Maker. Carriage expresses simply the manner of holding the body, especially in sitting or walking, as when it is said of a lady "she has a fine carriage." Bearing refers to the bodily expression of feeling or disposition; as, a haughty bearing; a noble bearing. Demeanor is the bodily expression, not only of feelings, but of moral states; as, a devout demeanor. Breeding, unless with some adverse limitation, denotes that manner and conduct which result from good birth and training. Deportment is behavior as related to a set of rules; as, the pupil's deportment was faultless. A person's manner may be that of a moment, or toward a single person; his manners are his habitual style of behavior toward or before others, especially in matters of etiquette and politeness; as, good manners are always pleasing.

Prepositions:

The behavior of the pastor to or toward his people, on or upon the streets, before the multitude, or in the church, with the godly, or with the worldly, was alike faultless.

* * * * *

BEND.

Synonyms:

bias, curve, diverge, mold, submit, twist, bow, deflect, incline, persuade, turn, warp, crook, deviate, influence, stoop, twine, yield.

In some cases a thing is spoken of as bent where the parts make an angle; but oftener to bend is understood to be to draw to or through a curve; as, to bend a bow. To submit or yield is to bend the mind humbly to another's wishes. To incline or influence is to bend another's wishes toward our own; to persuade is to draw them quite over. To warp is to bend silently through the whole fiber, as a board in the sun. To crook is to bend irregularly, as a crooked stick. Deflect, deviate, and diverge are said of any turning away; deviate commonly of a slight and gradual movement, diverge of a more sharp and decided one. To bias is to cut across the texture, or incline to one side; in figurative use always with an unfavorable import. Mold is a stronger work than bend; we may bend by a superior force that which still resists the constraint; as, a bent bow; we mold something plastic entirely to some desired form.

* * * * *

BENEVOLENCE.

Synonyms:

almsgiving, charity, kind-heartedness, munificence, beneficence, generosity, kindliness, philanthropy, benignity, good-will, kindness, sympathy, bounty, humanity, liberality, unselfishness.

According to the etymology and original usage, beneficence is the doing well, benevolence the wishing or willing well to others; but benevolence has come to include beneficence, and to displace it. We should not now speak of benevolence which did not help, unless where there was no power to help; even then we should rather say good-will or sympathy. Charity, which originally meant the purest love for God and man (as in 1 Cor. xiii), is now almost universally applied to some form of almsgiving, and is much more limited in meaning than benevolence. Benignity suggests some occult power of blessing, such as was formerly ascribed to the stars; we may say a good man has an air of benignity. Kindness and tenderness are personal; benevolence and charity are general. Kindness extends to all sentient beings, whether men or animals, in prosperity or in distress. Tenderness especially goes out toward the young, feeble, and needy, or even to the dead. Humanity is so much kindness and tenderness toward man or beast as it would be inhuman not to have; we say of some act of care or kindness, "common humanity requires it." Generosity is self-forgetful kindness in disposition or action; it includes much besides giving; as, the generosity of forgiveness. Bounty applies to ample giving, which on a larger scale is expressed by munificence. Liberality indicates broad, genial kindly views, whether manifested in gifts or otherwise. We speak of the bounty of a generous host, the liberality or munificence of the founder of a college, or of the liberality of a theologian toward the holders of conflicting beliefs. Philanthropy applies to wide schemes for human welfare, often, but not always, involving large expenditures in charity or benevolence. Compare MERCY.

Antonyms:

barbarity, greediness, ill-will, malignity, self-seeking, brutality, harshness, inhumanity, niggardliness, stinginess, churlishness, illiberality, malevolence, selfishness, unkindness.

Prepositions:

Benevolence of, on the part of, or from the wealthy, to or toward the poor.

* * * * *

BIND.

Synonyms:

compel, fetter, oblige, restrict, shackle, engage, fix, restrain, secure, tie. fasten,

Binding is primarily by something flexible, as a cord or bandage drawn closely around an object or group of objects, as when we bind up a wounded limb. We bind a sheaf of wheat with a cord; we tie the cord in a knot; we fasten by any means that will make things hold together, as a board by nails, or a door by a lock. The verbs tie and fasten are scarcely used in the figurative sense, tho, using the noun, we speak of the ties of affection. Bind has an extensive figurative use. One is bound by conscience or honor; he is obliged by some imperious necessity; engaged by his own promise; compelled by physical force or its moral equivalent.

Antonyms:

free, loose, set free, unbind, unfasten, unloose, untie.

Prepositions:

Bind to a pillar; unto an altar; to a service; bind one with chains or in chains; one is bound by a contract; a splint is bound upon a limb; the arms may be bound to the sides or behind the back; bind a wreath about, around, or round the head; twigs are bound in or into fagots; for military purposes, they are bound at both ends and in the middle; one is bound by a contract, or bound under a penalty to fulfil a contract.

* * * * *

BITTER.

Synonyms:

acerb, acidulous, caustic, pungent, stinging, acetous, acrid, cutting, savage, tart, acid, acrimonious, harsh, sharp, vinegarish, acidulated, biting, irate, sour, virulent.

Acid, sour, and bitter agree in being contrasted with sweet, but the two former are sharply distinguished from the latter. Acid or sour is the taste of vinegar or lemon-juice; bitter that of quassia, quinine, or strychnine. Acrid is nearly allied to bitter. Pungent suggests the effect of pepper or snuff on the organs of taste or smell; as, a pungent odor. Caustic indicates the corroding effect of some strong chemical, as nitrate of silver. In a figurative sense, as applied to language or character, these words are very closely allied. We say a sour face, sharp words, bitter complaints, caustic wit, cutting irony, biting sarcasm, a stinging taunt, harsh judgment, a tart reply. Harsh carries the idea of intentional and severe unkindness, bitter of a severity that arises from real or supposed ill treatment. The bitter speech springs from the sore heart. Tart and sharp utterances may not proceed from an intention to wound, but merely from a wit recklessly keen; cutting, stinging, and biting speech indicates more or less of hostile intent, the latter being the more deeply malicious. The caustic utterance is meant to burn, perhaps wholesomely, as in the satire of Juvenal or Cervantes. Compare MOROSE.

Antonyms:

dulcet, honeyed, luscious, nectared, saccharine, sweet.

* * * * *

BLEACH, v.

Synonyms:

blanch, make white, whiten, whitewash.

To whiten is to make white in general, but commonly it means to overspread with white coloring-matter. Bleach and blanch both signify to whiten by depriving of color, the former permanently, as linen; the latter either permanently (as, to blanch celery) or temporarily (as, to blanch the cheek with fear). To whitewash is to whiten superficially, especially by false approval.

Antonyms:

blacken, color, darken, dye, soil, stain.

* * * * *

BLEMISH.

Synonyms:

blot, defacement, disgrace, injury, spot, blur, defect, dishonor, reproach, stain, brand, deformity, fault, smirch, stigma, crack, dent, flaw, soil, taint, daub, disfigurement, imperfection, speck, tarnish.

Whatever mars the beauty or completeness of an object is a blemish, whether original, as squinting eyes, or the result of accident or disease, etc., as the pits of smallpox. A blemish is superficial; a flaw or taint is in structure or substance. In the moral sense, we speak of a blot or stain upon reputation; a flaw or taint in character. A defect is the want or lack of something; fault, primarily a failing, is something that fails of an apparent intent or disappoints a natural expectation; thus a sudden dislocation or displacement of geological strata is called a fault. Figuratively, a blemish comes from one's own ill-doing; a brand or stigma is inflicted by others; as, the brand of infamy.

* * * * *

BLOW.

Synonyms:

box, concussion, disaster, misfortune, stripe, buffet, cuff, knock, rap, stroke, calamity, cut, lash, shock, thump.

A blow is a sudden impact, as of a fist or a club; a stroke is a sweeping movement; as, the stroke of a sword, of an oar, of the arm in swimming. A shock is the sudden encounter with some heavy body; as, colliding railway-trains meet with a shock; the shock of battle. A slap is given with the open hand, a lash with a whip, thong, or the like; we speak also of the cut of a whip. A buffet or cuff is given only with the hand; a blow either with hand or weapon. A cuff is a somewhat sidelong blow, generally with the open hand; as, a cuff or box on the ear. A stripe is the effect or mark of a stroke. In the metaphorical sense, blow is used for sudden, stunning, staggering calamity or sorrow; stroke for sweeping disaster, and also for sweeping achievement and success. We say a stroke of paralysis, or a stroke of genius. We speak of the buffets of adverse fortune. Shock is used of that which is at once sudden, violent, and prostrating; we speak of a shock of electricity, the shock of an amputation, a shock of surprise. Compare BEAT.

* * * * *

BLUFF.

Synonyms:

abrupt, brusk, impolite, rough, blunt, coarse, inconsiderate, rude, blustering, discourteous, open, uncivil, bold, frank, plain-spoken, unmannerly.

Bluff is a word of good meaning, as are frank and open. The bluff man talks and laughs loudly and freely, says and does whatever he pleases with fearless good nature, and with no thought of annoying or giving pain to others. The blunt man says things which he is perfectly aware are disagreeable, either from a defiant indifference to others' feelings, or from the pleasure of tormenting.

Antonyms:

bland, genial, polished, polite, refined, reserved, urbane. courteous,

* * * * *

BODY.

Synonyms:

ashes, clay, dust, frame, system, carcass, corpse, form, remains, trunk.

Body denotes the entire physical structure, considered as a whole, of man or animal; form looks upon it as a thing of shape and outline, perhaps of beauty; frame regards it as supported by its bony framework; system views it as an assemblage of many related and harmonious organs. Body, form, frame, and system may be either dead or living; clay and dust are sometimes so used in religious or poetic style, tho ordinarily these words are used only of the dead. Corpse and remains are used only of the dead. Corpse is the plain technical word for a dead body still retaining its unity; remains may be used after any lapse of time; the latter is also the more refined and less ghastly term; as, friends are invited to view the remains. Carcass applies only to the body of an animal, or of a human being regarded with contempt and loathing. Compare COMPANY.

Antonyms:

intellect, intelligence, mind, soul, spirit.

* * * * *

BOTH.

Synonyms:

twain, two.

Both refers to two objects previously mentioned, or had in mind, viewed or acting in connection; as, both men fired at once; "two men fired" might mean any two, out of any number, and without reference to any previous thought or mention. Twain is a nearly obsolete form of two. The two, or the twain, is practically equivalent to both; both, however, expresses a closer unity. We would say both men rushed against the enemy; the two men flew at each other. Compare EVERY.

Antonyms:

each, either, every, neither, none, no one, not any.

* * * * *

BOUNDARY.

Synonyms:

barrier, confines, limit, margin, border, edge, line, term, bound, enclosure, marches, termination, bourn, frontier, marge, verge. bourne, landmark,

The boundary was originally the landmark, that which marked off one piece of territory from another. The bound is the limit, marked or unmarked. Now, however, the difference between the two words has come to be simply one of usage. As regards territory, we speak of the boundaries of a nation or of an estate; the bounds of a college, a ball-ground, etc. Bounds may be used for all within the limits, boundary for the limiting line only. Boundary looks to that which is without; bound only to that which is within. Hence we speak of the bounds, not the boundaries, of a subject, of the universe, etc.; we say the students were forbidden to go beyond the bounds. A barrier is something that bars ingress or egress. A barrier may be a boundary, as was the Great Wall of China. Bourn, or bourne, is a poetical expression for bound or boundary. A border is a strip of land along the boundary. Edge is a sharp terminal line, as where river or ocean meets the land. Limit is now used almost wholly in the figurative sense; as, the limit of discussion, of time, of jurisdiction. Line is a military term; as, within the lines, or through the lines, of an army. Compare BARRIER; END.

Antonyms:

center, citadel, estate, inside, interior, land, region, territory.

Prepositions:

The boundaries of an estate; the boundary between neighboring territories.

* * * * *

BRAVE.

Synonyms:

adventurous, courageous, fearless, undaunted, bold, daring, gallant, undismayed, chivalric, dauntless, heroic, valiant, chivalrous, doughty, intrepid, venturesome.

The adventurous man goes in quest of danger; the bold man stands out and faces danger or censure; the brave man combines confidence with resolution in presence of danger; the chivalrous man puts himself in peril for others' protection. The daring step out to defy danger; the dauntless will not flinch before anything that may come to them; the doughty will give and take limitless hard knocks. The adventurous find something romantic in dangerous enterprises; the venturesome may be simply heedless, reckless, or ignorant. All great explorers have been adventurous; children, fools, and criminals are venturesome. The fearless and intrepid possess unshaken nerves in any place of danger. Courageous is more than brave, adding a moral element: the courageous man steadily encounters perils to which he may be keenly sensitive, at the call of duty; the gallant are brave in a dashing, showy, and splendid way; the valiant not only dare great dangers, but achieve great results; the heroic are nobly daring and dauntless, truly chivalrous, sublimely courageous. Compare FORTITUDE.

Antonyms:

afraid, cringing, fearful, pusillanimous, timid, cowardly, faint-hearted, frightened, shrinking, timorous.

* * * * *

BREAK.

Synonyms:

bankrupt, crack, destroy, rive, shatter, split, burst, crush, fracture, rupture, shiver, sunder, cashier, demolish, rend, sever, smash, transgress.

To break is to divide sharply, with severance of particles, as by a blow or strain. To burst is to break by pressure from within, as a bombshell, but it is used also for the result of violent force otherwise exerted; as, to burst in a door, where the door yields as if to an explosion. To crush is to break by pressure from without, as an egg-shell. To crack is to break without complete severance of parts; a cracked cup or mirror may still hold together. Fracture has a somewhat similar sense. In a fractured limb, the ends of the broken bone may be separated, tho both portions are still retained within the common muscular tissue. A shattered object is broken suddenly and in numerous directions; as, a vase is shattered by a blow, a building by an earthquake. A shivered glass is broken into numerous minute, needle-like fragments. To smash is to break thoroughly to pieces with a crashing sound by some sudden act of violence; a watch once smashed will scarcely be worth repair. To split is to cause wood to crack or part in the way of the grain, and is applied to any other case where a natural tendency to separation is enforced by an external cause; as, to split a convention or a party. To demolish is to beat down, as a mound, building, fortress, etc.; to destroy is to put by any process beyond restoration physically, mentally, or morally; to destroy an army is so to shatter and scatter it that it can not be rallied or reassembled as a fighting force. Compare REND.

Antonyms:

attach, bind, fasten, join, mend, secure, solder, unite, weld.

Prepositions:

Break to pieces, or in pieces, into several pieces (when the object is thought of as divided rather than shattered); break with a friend; from or away from a suppliant; break into a house; out of prison; break across one's knee; break through a hedge; break in upon one's retirement; break over the rules; break on or upon the shore, against the rocks.

* * * * *

BRUTISH.

Synonyms:

animal, brutal, ignorant, sensual, swinish, base, brute, imbruted, sottish, unintellectual, beastly, carnal, insensible, stolid, unspiritual, bestial, coarse, lascivious, stupid, vile.

A brutish man simply follows his animal instincts, without special inclination to do harm; the brutal have always a spirit of malice and cruelty. Brute has no special character, except as indicating what a brute might possess; much the same is true of animal, except that animal leans more to the side of sensuality, brute to that of force, as appears in the familiar phrase "brute force." Hunger is an animal appetite; a brute impulse suddenly prompts one to strike a blow in anger. Bestial, in modern usage, implies an intensified and degrading animalism. Any supremacy of the animal or brute instincts over the intellectual and spiritual in man is base and vile. Beastly refers largely to the outward and visible consequences of excess; as, beastly drunkenness. Compare ANIMAL.

Antonyms:

elevated, exalted, great, intellectual, noble, enlightened, grand, humane, intelligent, refined.

* * * * *

BURN.

Synonyms:

blaze, char, flame, incinerate, set fire to, brand, consume, flash, kindle, set on fire, cauterize, cremate, ignite, scorch, singe.

To burn is to subject to the action of fire, or of intense heat so as to effect either partial change or complete combustion; as, to burn wood in the fire; to burn one's hand on a hot stove; the sun burns the face. One brands with a hot iron, but cauterizes with some corrosive substance, as silver nitrate. Cremate is now used specifically for consuming a dead body by intense heat. To incinerate is to reduce to ashes; the sense differs little from that of cremate, but it is in less popular use. To kindle is to set on fire, as if with a candle; ignite is the more learned and scientific word for the same thing, extending even to the heating of metals to a state of incandescence without burning. To scorch and to singe are superficial, and to char usually so. Both kindle and burn have an extensive figurative use; as, to kindle strife; to burn with wrath, love, devotion, curiosity. Compare LIGHT.

Antonyms:

cool, extinguish, put out, smother, stifle, subdue.

Prepositions:

To burn in the fire, burn with fire; burn to the ground, burn to ashes; burn through the skin, or the roof; burn into the soil, etc.

* * * * *

BUSINESS.

Synonyms:

affair, commerce, handicraft, trading, art, concern, job, traffic, avocation, craft, occupation, transaction, barter, duty, profession, vocation, calling, employment, trade, work.

A business is what one follows regularly; an occupation is what he happens at any time to be engaged in; trout-fishing may be one's occupation for a time, as a relief from business; business is ordinarily for profit, while the occupation may be a matter of learning, philanthropy, or religion. A profession implies scholarship; as, the learned professions. Pursuit is an occupation which one follows with ardor. An avocation is what calls one away from other work; a vocation or calling, that to which one is called by some special fitness or sense of duty; thus, we speak of the gospel ministry as a vocation or calling, rather than a business. Trade or trading is, in general, the exchanging of one thing for another; in the special sense, a trade is an occupation involving manual training and skilled labor; as, the ancient Jews held that every boy should learn a trade. A transaction is a single action, whether in business, diplomacy, or otherwise; affair has a similar, but lighter meaning; as, this little affair; an important transaction. The plural affairs has a distinctive meaning, including all activities where men deal with one another on any considerable scale; as, a man of affairs. A job is a piece of work viewed as a single undertaking, and ordinarily paid for as such. Trade and commerce may be used as equivalents, but trade is capable of a more limited application; we speak of the trade of a village, the commerce of a nation. Barter is the direct exchange of commodities; business, trade, and commerce are chiefly transacted by means of money, bills of exchange, etc. Business, occupation, etc., may be what one does independently; employment may be in the service of another. Work is any application of energy to secure a result, or the result thus secured; thus, we speak of the work of God. Art in the industrial sense is a system of rules and accepted methods for the accomplishment of some practical result; as, the art of printing; collectively, the arts. A craft is some occupation requiring technical skill or manual dexterity, or the persons, collectively, engaged in its exercise; as, the weaver's craft.

Prepositions:

The business of a druggist; in business with his father; doing business for his father; have you business with me? business in New York; business about, concerning, or in regard to certain property.

* * * * *

BUT.

Synonyms:

and, however, notwithstanding, that, barely, just, only, tho, besides, merely, provided, unless, except, moreover, save, yet. further, nevertheless, still,

But ranges from the faintest contrast to absolute negation; as, I am willing to go, but (on the other hand) content to stay; he is not an honest man, but (on the contrary) a villain. The contrast may be with a silent thought; as, but let us go (it being understood that we might stay longer). In restrictive use, except and excepting are slightly more emphatic than but; we say, no injury but a scratch; or, no injury except some painful bruises. Such expressions as "words are but breath" (nothing but) may be referred to the restrictive use by ellipsis. So may the use of but in the sense of unless; as, "it never rains but it pours." To the same head must be referred the conditional use; as, "you may go, but with your father's consent" (i. e., "provided you have," "except that you must have," etc.). "Doubt but" is now less used than the more logical "doubt that." But never becomes a full synonym for and; and adds something like, but adds something different; "brave and tender" implies that tenderness is natural to the brave; "brave but tender" implies that bravery and tenderness are rarely combined. For the concessive use, compare NOTWITHSTANDING.

* * * * *

BY.

Synonyms:

by dint of, by means of, through, with.

By refers to the agent; through, to the means, cause, or condition; with, to the instrument. By commonly refers to persons; with, to things; through may refer to either. The road having become impassable through long disuse, a way was opened by pioneers with axes. By may, however, be applied to any object which is viewed as partaking of action and agency; as, the metal was corroded by the acid; skill is gained by practise. We speak of communicating with a person by letter. Through implies a more distant connection than by or with, and more intervening elements. Material objects are perceived by the mind through the senses.

* * * * *

CABAL.

Synonyms:

combination, confederacy, crew, gang, conclave, conspiracy, faction, junto.

A conspiracy is a combination of persons for an evil purpose, or the act of so combining. Conspiracy is a distinct crime under common, and generally under statutory, law. A faction is more extensive than a conspiracy, less formal in organization, less definite in plan. Faction and its adjective, factious, have always an unfavorable sense. Cabal commonly denotes a conspiracy of leaders. A gang is a company of workmen all doing the same work under one leader; the word is used figuratively only of combinations which it is meant to stigmatize as rude and mercenary; crew is used in a closely similar sense. A conclave is secret, but of larger numbers, ordinarily, than a cabal, and may have honorable use; as, the conclave of cardinals.

* * * * *

CALCULATE.

Synonyms:

account, consider, enumerate, rate, cast, count, estimate, reckon, compute, deem, number, sum up.

Number is the generic term. To count is to number one by one. To calculate is to use more complicated processes, as multiplication, division, etc., more rapid but not less exact. Compute allows more of the element of probability, which is still more strongly expressed by estimate. We compute the slain in a great war from the number known to have fallen in certain great battles; compute refers to the present or the past, estimate more frequently to the future; as, to estimate the cost of a proposed building. To enumerate is to mention item by item; as, to enumerate one's grievances. To rate is to estimate by comparison, as if the object were one of a series. We count upon a desired future; we do not count upon the undesired. As applied to the present, we reckon or count a thing precious or worthless. Compare ESTEEM.

Prepositions:

It is vain to calculate on or upon an uncertain result.

* * * * *

CALL, v.

Synonyms:

bawl, cry (out), roar, shriek, bellow, ejaculate, scream, vociferate, clamor, exclaim, shout, yell.

To call is to send out the voice in order to attract another's attention, either by word or by inarticulate utterance. Animals call their mates, or their young; a man calls his dog, his horse, etc. The sense is extended to include summons by bell, or any signal. To shout is to call or exclaim with the fullest volume of sustained voice; to scream is to utter a shriller cry; to shriek or to yell refers to that which is louder and wilder still. We shout words; in screaming, shrieking, or yelling there is often no attempt at articulation. To bawl is to utter senseless, noisy cries, as of a child in pain or anger. Bellow and roar are applied to the utterances of animals, and only contemptuously to those of persons. To clamor is to utter with noisy iteration; it applies also to the confused cries of a multitude. To vociferate is commonly applied to loud and excited speech where there is little besides the exertion of voice. In exclaiming, the utterance may not be strikingly, tho somewhat, above the ordinary tone and pitch; we may exclaim by mere interjections, or by connected words, but always by some articulate utterance. To ejaculate is to throw out brief, disconnected, but coherent utterances of joy, regret, and especially of appeal, petition, prayer; the use of such devotional utterances has received the special name of "ejaculatory prayer." To cry out is to give forth a louder and more excited utterance than in exclaiming or calling; one often exclaims with sudden joy as well as sorrow; if he cries out, it is oftener in grief or agony. In the most common colloquial usage, to cry is to express grief or pain by weeping or sobbing. One may exclaim, cry out, or ejaculate with no thought of others' presence; when he calls, it is to attract another's attention.

Antonyms:

be silent, be still, hark, hearken, hush, list, listen.

* * * * *

CALM.

Synonyms:

collected, imperturbable, sedate, still, composed, peaceful, self-possessed, tranquil, cool, placid, serene, undisturbed, dispassionate, quiet, smooth, unruffled.

That is calm which is free from disturbance or agitation; in the physical sense, free from violent motion or action; in the mental or spiritual realm, free from excited or disturbing emotion or passion. We speak of a calm sea, a placid lake, a serene sky, a still night, a quiet day, a quiet home. We speak, also, of "still waters," "smooth sailing," which are different modes of expressing freedom from manifest agitation. Of mental conditions, one is calm who triumphs over a tendency to excitement; cool, if he scarcely feels the tendency. One may be calm by the very reaction from excitement, or by the oppression of overpowering emotion, as we speak of the calmness of despair. One is composed who has subdued excited feeling; he is collected when he has every thought, feeling, or perception awake and at command. Tranquil refers to a present state, placid, to a prevailing tendency. We speak of a tranquil mind, a placid disposition. The serene spirit dwells as if in the clear upper air, above all storm and shadow.

The star of the unconquered will, He rises in my breast, Serene, and resolute, and still, And calm, and self-possessed.

LONGFELLOW Light of Stars st. 7.

Antonyms:

agitated, excited, frenzied, passionate, ruffled, violent, boisterous, fierce, furious, raging, stormy, wild, disturbed, frantic, heated, roused, turbulent, wrathful.

* * * * *

CANCEL.

Synonyms:

abolish, discharge, nullify, rescind, abrogate, efface, obliterate, revoke, annul, erase, quash, rub off or out, blot out, expunge, remove, scratch out, cross off or out, make void, repeal, vacate.

Cancel, efface, erase, expunge, and obliterate have as their first meaning the removal of written characters or other forms of record. To cancel is, literally, to make a lattice by cross-lines, exactly our English cross out; to efface is to rub off, smooth away the face, as of an inscription; to erase is to scratch out, commonly for the purpose of writing something else in the same space; to expunge, is to punch out with some sharp instrument, so as to show that the words are no longer part of the writing; to obliterate is to cover over or remove, as a letter, as was done by reversing the Roman stylus, and rubbing out with the rounded end what had been written with the point on the waxen tablet. What has been canceled, erased, expunged, may perhaps still be traced; what is obliterated is gone forever, as if it had never been. In many establishments, when a debt is discharged by payment, the record is canceled. The figurative use of the words keeps close to the primary sense. Compare ABOLISH.

Antonyms:

approve, enact, establish, perpetuate, reenact, uphold, confirm, enforce, maintain, record, sustain, write.

* * * * *

CANDID.

Synonyms:

aboveboard, honest, open, truthful, artless, impartial, simple, unbiased, fair, ingenuous, sincere, unprejudiced, frank, innocent, straightforward, unreserved, guileless, naive, transparent, unsophisticated.

A candid statement is meant to be true to the real facts and just to all parties; a fair statement is really so. Fair is applied to the conduct; candid is not; as, fair treatment, "a fair field, and no favor." One who is frank has a fearless and unconstrained truthfulness. Honest and ingenuous unite in expressing contempt for deceit. On the other hand, artless, guileless, naive, simple, and unsophisticated express the goodness which comes from want of the knowledge or thought of evil. As truth is not always agreeable or timely, candid and frank have often an objectionable sense; "to be candid with you," "to be perfectly frank," are regarded as sure preludes to something disagreeable. Open and unreserved may imply unstudied truthfulness or defiant recklessness; as, open admiration, open robbery. There may be transparent integrity or transparent fraud. Sincere applies to the feelings, as being all that one's words would imply.

Antonyms:

adroit, cunning, diplomatic, intriguing, sharp, subtle, artful, deceitful, foxy, knowing, shrewd, tricky, crafty, designing, insincere, maneuvering, sly, wily.

Prepositions:

Candid in debate; candid to or toward opponents; candid with friend or foe; to be candid about or in regard to the matter.

* * * * *

CAPARISON.

Synonyms:

accouterments, harness, housings, trappings.

Harness was formerly used of the armor of a knight as well as of a horse; it is now used almost exclusively of the straps and appurtenances worn by a horse when attached to a vehicle; the animal is said to be "kind in harness." The other words apply to the ornamental outfit of a horse, especially under saddle. We speak also of the accouterments of a soldier. Caparison is used rarely and somewhat slightingly, and trappings quite contemptuously, for showy human apparel. Compare ARMS; DRESS.

* * * * *

CAPITAL.

Synonyms:

chief city, metropolis, seat of government.

The metropolis is the chief city in the commercial, the capital in the political sense. The capital of an American State is rarely its metropolis.

* * * * *

CARE.

Synonyms:

anxiety, concern, oversight, trouble, attention, direction, perplexity, vigilance, caution, forethought, precaution, wariness, charge, heed, prudence, watchfulness, circumspection, management, solicitude, worry.

Care concerns what we possess; anxiety, often, what we do not; riches bring many cares; poverty brings many anxieties. Care also signifies watchful attention, in view of possible harm; as, "This side up with care;" "Take care of yourself;" or, as a sharp warning, "Take care!" Caution has a sense of possible harm and risk only to be escaped, if at all, by careful deliberation and observation. Care inclines to the positive, caution to the negative; care is shown in doing, caution largely in not doing. Precaution is allied with care, prudence with caution; a man rides a dangerous horse with care; caution will keep him from mounting the horse; precaution looks to the saddle-girths, bit and bridle, and all that may make the rider secure. Circumspection is watchful observation and calculation, but without the timidity implied in caution. Concern denotes a serious interest, milder than anxiety; as, concern for the safety of a ship at sea. Heed implies attention without disquiet; it is now largely displaced by attention and care. Solicitude involves especially the element of desire, not expressed in anxiety, and of hopefulness, not implied in care. A parent feels constant solicitude for his children's welfare, anxiety as to dangers that threaten it, with care to guard against them. Watchfulness recognizes the possibility of danger, wariness the probability. A man who is not influenced by caution to keep out of danger may display great wariness in the midst of it. Care has also the sense of responsibility, with possible control, as expressed in charge, management, oversight; as, these children are under my care; send the money to me in care of the firm. Compare ALARM; ANXIETY; PRUDENCE.

Antonyms:

carelessness, inattention, negligence, oversight, remissness, disregard, indifference, omission, recklessness, slight. heedlessness, neglect,

Prepositions:

Take care of the house; for the future; about the matter.

* * * * *

CAREER.

Synonyms:

charge, flight, passage, race, course, line of achievement, public life, rush.

A career was originally the ground for a race, or, especially, for a knight's charge in tournament or battle; whence career was early applied to the charge itself.

If you will use the lance, take ground for your career.... The four horsemen met in full career.

SCOTT Quentin Durward ch. 14, p. 194. [D. F. & CO.]

In its figurative use career signifies some continuous and conspicuous work, usually a life-work, and most frequently one of honorable achievement. Compare BUSINESS.

* * * * *

CARESS.

Synonyms:

coddle, embrace, fondle, pamper, court, flatter, kiss, pet.

To caress is less than to embrace; more dignified and less familiar than to fondle. A visitor caresses a friend's child; a mother fondles her babe. Fondling is always by touch; caressing may be also by words, or other tender and pleasing attentions.

Antonyms:

See synonyms for AFFRONT.

Prepositions:

Caressed by or with the hand; caressed by admirers, at court.

* * * * *

CARICATURE.

Synonyms:

burlesque, extravaganza, mimicry, take-off, exaggeration, imitation, parody, travesty.

A caricature is a grotesque exaggeration of striking features or peculiarities, generally of a person; a burlesque treats any subject in an absurd or incongruous manner. A burlesque is written or acted; a caricature is more commonly in sketch or picture. A parody changes the subject, but keeps the style; a travesty keeps the subject, but changes the style; a burlesque does not hold itself to either subject or style; but is content with a general resemblance to what it may imitate. A caricature, parody, or travesty must have an original; a burlesque may be an independent composition. An account of a schoolboys' quarrel after the general manner of Homer's Iliad would be a burlesque; the real story of the Iliad told in newspaper style would be a travesty. An extravaganza is a fantastic composition, musical, dramatic, or narrative. Imitation is serious; mimicry is either intentionally or unintentionally comical.

* * * * *

CARRY.

Synonyms:

bear, convey, move, sustain, transmit, bring, lift, remove, take, transport.

A person may bear a load either when in motion or at rest; he carries it only when in motion. The stooping Atlas bears the world on his shoulders; swiftly moving Time carries the hour-glass and scythe; a person may be said either to bear or to carry a scar, since it is upon him whether in motion or at rest. If an object is to be moved from the place we occupy, we say carry; if to the place we occupy, we say bring. A messenger carries a letter to a correspondent, and brings an answer. Take is often used in this sense in place of carry; as, take that letter to the office. Carry often signifies to transport by personal strength, without reference to the direction; as, that is more than he can carry; yet, even so, it would not be admissible to say carry it to me, or carry it here; in such case we must say bring. To lift is simply to raise from the ground, tho but for an instant, with no reference to holding or moving; one may be able to lift what he could not carry. The figurative uses of carry are very numerous; as, to carry an election, carry the country, carry (in the sense of capture) a fort, carry an audience, carry a stock of goods, etc. Compare CONVEY; KEEP; SUPPORT.

Antonyms:

drop, fall under, give up, let go, shake off, throw down, throw off.

Prepositions:

To carry coals to Newcastle; carry nothing from, or out of, this house; he carried these qualities into all he did; carry across the street, over the bridge, through the woods, around or round the corner; beyond the river; the cable was carried under the sea.

* * * * *

CATASTROPHE.

Synonyms:

calamity, denouement, mischance, mishap, cataclysm, disaster, misfortune, sequel.

A cataclysm or catastrophe is some great convulsion or momentous event that may or may not be a cause of misery to man. In calamity, or disaster, the thought of human suffering is always present. It has been held by many geologists that numerous catastrophes or cataclysms antedated the existence of man. In literature, the final event of a drama is the catastrophe, or denouement. Misfortune ordinarily suggests less of suddenness and violence than calamity or disaster, and is especially applied to that which is lingering or enduring in its effects. In history, the end of every great war or the fall of a nation is a catastrophe, tho it may not be a calamity. Yet such an event, if not a calamity to the race, will always involve much individual disaster and misfortune. Pestilence is a calamity; a defeat in battle, a shipwreck, or a failure in business is a disaster; sickness or loss of property is a misfortune; failure to meet a friend is a mischance; the breaking of a teacup is a mishap.

Antonyms:

benefit, boon, favor, pleasure, prosperity, blessing, comfort, help, privilege, success.

Preposition:

The catastrophe of a play; of a siege; rarely, to a person, etc.

* * * * *

CATCH.

Synonyms:

apprehend, comprehend, grasp, overtake, snatch, capture, discover, grip, secure, take, clasp, ensnare, gripe, seize, take hold of. clutch, entrap, lay hold of (on, upon),

To catch is to come up with or take possession of something departing, fugitive, or illusive. We catch a runaway horse, a flying ball, a mouse in a trap. We clutch with a swift, tenacious movement of the fingers; we grasp with a firm but moderate closure of the whole hand; we grip or gripe with the strongest muscular closure of the whole hand possible to exert. We clasp in the arms. We snatch with a quick, sudden, and usually a surprising motion. In the figurative sense, catch is used of any act that brings a person or thing into our power or possession; as, to catch a criminal in the act; to catch an idea, in the sense of apprehend or comprehend. Compare ARREST.

Antonyms:

fail of, give up, lose, release, throw aside, fall short of, let go, miss, restore, throw away.

Prepositions:

To catch at a straw; to catch a fugitive by the collar; to catch a ball with the left hand; he caught the disease from the patient; the thief was caught in the act; the bird in the snare.

* * * * *

CAUSE.

Synonyms:

actor, causality, designer, occasion, precedent, agent, causation, former, origin, reason, antecedent, condition, fountain, originator, source, author, creator, motive, power, spring.

The efficient cause, that which makes anything to be or be done, is the common meaning of the word, as in the saying "There is no effect without a cause." Every man instinctively recognizes himself acting through will as the cause of his own actions. The Creator is the Great First Cause of all things. A condition is something that necessarily precedes a result, but does not produce it. An antecedent simply precedes a result, with or without any agency in producing it; as, Monday is the invariable antecedent of Tuesday, but not the cause of it. The direct antonym of cause is effect, while that of antecedent is consequent. An occasion is some event which brings a cause into action at a particular moment; gravitation and heat are the causes of an avalanche; the steep incline of the mountain-side is a necessary condition, and the shout of the traveler may be the occasion of its fall. Causality is the doctrine or principle of causes, causation the action or working of causes. Compare DESIGN; REASON.

Antonyms:

consequence, development, end, fruit, outcome, product, creation, effect, event, issue, outgrowth, result.

Prepositions:

The cause of the disaster; cause for interference.

* * * * *

CEASE.

Synonyms:

abstain, desist, give over, quit, bring to an end, discontinue, intermit, refrain, come to an end, end, leave off, stop, conclude, finish, pause, terminate.

Strains of music may gradually or suddenly cease. A man quits work on the instant; he may discontinue a practise gradually; he quits suddenly and completely; he stops short in what he may or may not resume; he pauses in what he will probably resume. What intermits or is intermitted returns again, as a fever that intermits. Compare ABANDON; DIE; END; REST.

Antonyms:

begin, inaugurate, originate, set going, set on foot, commence, initiate, set about, set in operation, start. enter upon, institute,

Preposition:

Cease from anger.

* * * * *

CELEBRATE.

Synonyms:

commemorate, keep, observe, solemnize.

To celebrate any event or occasion is to make some demonstration of respect or rejoicing because of or in memory of it, or to perform such public rites or ceremonies as it properly demands. We celebrate the birth, commemorate the death of one beloved or honored. We celebrate a national anniversary with music and song, with firing of guns and ringing of bells; we commemorate by any solemn and thoughtful service, or by a monument or other enduring memorial. We keep the Sabbath, solemnize a marriage, observe an anniversary; we celebrate or observe the Lord's Supper in which believers commemorate the sufferings and death of Christ.

Antonyms:

contemn, dishonor, forget, neglect, profane, despise, disregard, ignore, overlook, violate.

Prepositions:

We celebrate the day with appropriate ceremonies; the victory was celebrated by the people, with rejoicing.

* * * * *

CENTER.

Synonyms:

middle, midst.

We speak of the center of a circle, the middle of a room, the middle of the street, the midst of a forest. The center is equally distant from every point of the circumference of a circle, or from the opposite boundaries on each axis of a parallelogram, etc.; the middle is more general and less definite. The center is a point; the middle may be a line or a space. We say at the center; in the middle. Midst commonly implies a group or multitude of surrounding objects. Compare synonyms for AMID.

Antonyms:

bound, boundary, circumference, perimeter, rim.

* * * * *

CHAGRIN.

Synonyms:

confusion, discomposure, humiliation, shame, disappointment, dismay, mortification, vexation.

Chagrin unites disappointment with some degree of humiliation. A rainy day may bring disappointment; needless failure in some enterprise brings chagrin. Shame involves the consciousness of fault, guilt, or impropriety; chagrin of failure of judgment, or harm to reputation. A consciousness that one has displayed his own ignorance will cause him mortification, however worthy his intent; if there was a design to deceive, the exposure will cover him with shame.

Antonyms:

delight, exultation, glory, rejoicing, triumph.

Prepositions:

He felt deep chagrin at (because of, on account of) failure.

* * * * *

CHANGE, v.

Synonyms:

alter, exchange, shift, transmute, commute, metamorphose, substitute, turn, convert, modify, transfigure, vary, diversify, qualify, transform, veer.

To change is distinctively to make a thing other than it has been, in some respect at least; to exchange to put or take something else in its place; to alter is ordinarily to change partially, to make different in one or more particulars. To exchange is often to transfer ownership; as, to exchange city for country property. Change is often used in the sense of exchange; as, to change horses. To transmute is to change the qualities while the substance remains the same; as, to transmute the baser metals into gold. To transform is to change form or appearance, with or without deeper and more essential change; it is less absolute than transmute, tho sometimes used for that word, and is often used in a spiritual sense as transmute could not be; "Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind," Rom. xii, 2. Transfigure is, as in its Scriptural use, to change in an exalted and glorious spiritual way; "Jesus ... was transfigured before them, and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light," Matt. xvii, 1, 2. To metamorphose is to make some remarkable change, ordinarily in external qualities, but often in structure, use, or chemical constitution, as of a caterpillar into a butterfly, of the stamens of a plant into petals, or of the crystalline structure of rocks, hence called "metamorphic rocks," as when a limestone is metamorphosed into a marble. To vary is to change from time to time, often capriciously. To commute is to put something easier, lighter, milder, or in some way more favorable in place of that which is commuted; as, to commute capital punishment to imprisonment for life; to commute daily fares on a railway to a monthly payment. To convert (L. con, with, and verto, turn) is to primarily turn about, and signifies to change in form, character, use, etc., through a wide range of relations; iron is converted into steel, joy into grief, a sinner into a saint. To turn is a popular word for change in any sense short of the meaning of exchange, being often equivalent to alter, convert, transform, transmute, etc. We modify or qualify a statement which might seem too strong; we modify it by some limitation, qualify it by some addition.

Antonyms:

abide, continue, hold, persist, retain, bide, endure, keep, remain, stay.

Prepositions:

To change a home toilet for a street dress; to change from a caterpillar to or into a butterfly; to change clothes with a beggar.

* * * * *

CHANGE, n.

Synonyms:

alteration, mutation, renewing, transmutation, conversion, novelty, revolution, variation, diversity, regeneration, transformation, variety, innovation, renewal, transition, vicissitude.

A change is a passing from one state or form to another, any act or process by which a thing becomes unlike what it was before, or the unlikeness so produced; we say a change was taking place, or the change that had taken place was manifest. Mutation is a more formal word for change, often suggesting repeated or continual change; as, the mutations of fortune. Novelty is a change to what is new, or the newness of that to which a change is made; as, he was perpetually desirous of novelty. Revolution is specifically and most commonly a change of government. Variation is a partial change in form, qualities, etc., but especially in position or action; as, the variation of the magnetic needle or of the pulse. Variety is a succession of changes or an intermixture of different things, and is always thought of as agreeable. Vicissitude is sharp, sudden, or violent change, always thought of as surprising and often as disturbing or distressing; as, the vicissitudes of politics. Transition is change by passing from one place or state to another, especially in a natural, regular, or orderly way; as, the transition from spring to summer, or from youth to manhood. An innovation is a change that breaks in upon an established order or custom; as, an innovation in religion or politics. For the distinctions between the other words compare the synonyms for CHANGE, v. In the religious sense regeneration is the vital renewing of the soul by the power of the divine Spirit; conversion is the conscious and manifest change from evil to good, or from a lower to a higher spiritual state; as, in Luke xxii, 32, "when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." In popular use conversion is the most common word to express the idea of regeneration.

Antonyms:

constancy, fixedness, invariability, steadiness, continuance, fixity, permanence, unchangeableness, firmness, identity, persistence, uniformity.

Prepositions:

We have made a change for the better; the change from winter to spring; the change of a liquid to or into a gas; a change in quality; a change by absorption or oxidation.

* * * * *

CHARACTER.

Synonyms:

constitution, genius, personality, reputation, temper, disposition, nature, record, spirit, temperament.

Character is what one is; reputation, what he is thought to be; his record is the total of his known action or inaction. As a rule, a man's record will substantially express his character; his reputation may be higher or lower than his character or record will justify. Repute is a somewhat formal word, with the same general sense as reputation. One's nature includes all his original endowments or propensities; character includes both natural and acquired traits. We speak of one's physical constitution as strong or weak, etc., and figuratively, always with the adjective, of his mental or moral constitution. Compare CHARACTERISTIC.

Prepositions:

The witness has a character for veracity; his character is above suspicion; the character of the applicant.

* * * * *

CHARACTERISTIC.

Synonyms:

attribute, feature, peculiarity, sign, trace, character, indication, property, singularity, trait. distinction, mark, quality,

A characteristic belongs to the nature or character of the person, thing, or class, and serves to identify an object; as, a copper-colored skin, high cheek-bones, and straight, black hair are characteristics of the American Indian. A sign is manifest to an observer; a mark or a characteristic may be more difficult to discover; an insensible person may show signs of life, while sometimes only close examination will disclose marks of violence. Pallor is ordinarily a mark of fear; but in some brave natures it is simply a characteristic of intense earnestness. Mark is sometimes used in a good, but often in a bad sense; we speak of the characteristic of a gentleman, the mark of a villain. Compare ATTRIBUTE; CHARACTER.

* * * * *

CHARMING.

Synonyms:

bewitching, delightful, enrapturing, fascinating, captivating, enchanting, entrancing, winning.

That is charming or bewitching which is adapted to win others as by a magic spell. Enchanting, enrapturing, entrancing represent the influence as not only supernatural, but irresistible and delightful. That which is fascinating may win without delighting, drawing by some unseen power, as a serpent its prey; we can speak of horrible fascination. Charming applies only to what is external to oneself; delightful may apply to personal experiences or emotions as well; we speak of a charming manner, a charming dress, but of delightful anticipations. Compare AMIABLE; BEAUTIFUL.

* * * * *

CHASTEN.

Synonyms:

afflict, chastise, discipline, punish, refine, subdue, castigate, correct, humble, purify, soften, try.

Castigate and chastise refer strictly to corporal punishment, tho both are somewhat archaic; correct and punish are often used as euphemisms in preference to either. Punish is distinctly retributive in sense; chastise, partly retributive, and partly corrective; chasten, wholly corrective. Chasten is used exclusively in the spiritual sense, and chiefly of the visitation of God.

Prepositions:

"We are chastened of the Lord," 1 Cor. xi, 32; "they ... chastened us after their own pleasure, but He for our profit," Heb. xii, 10; "chasten in thy hot displeasure," Ps. iv, 7; chasten with pain; by trials and sorrows.

* * * * *

CHERISH.

Synonyms:

cheer, encourage, harbor, nurse, shelter, cling to, entertain, hold dear, nurture, treasure, comfort, foster, nourish, protect, value.

To cherish is both to hold dear and to treat as dear. Mere unexpressed esteem would not be cherishing. In the marriage vow, "to love, honor, and cherish," the word cherish implies all that each can do by love and tenderness for the welfare and happiness of the other, as by support, protection, care in sickness, comfort in sorrow, sympathy, and help of every kind. To nurse is to tend the helpless or feeble, as infants, or the sick or wounded. To nourish is strictly to sustain and build up by food; to nurture includes careful mental and spiritual training, with something of love and tenderness; to foster is simply to maintain and care for, to bring up; a foster-child will be nourished, but may not be as tenderly nurtured or as lovingly cherished as if one's own. In the figurative sense, the opinion one cherishes he holds, not with mere cold conviction, but with loving devotion.

Antonyms:

See synonyms for ABANDON; CHASTEN.

* * * * *

CHOOSE.

Synonyms:

cull, elect, pick, pick out, prefer, select.

Prefer indicates a state of desire and approval; choose, an act of will. Prudence or generosity may lead one to choose what he does not prefer. Select implies a careful consideration of the reasons for preference and choice. Among objects so nearly alike that we have no reason to prefer any one to another we may simply choose the nearest, but we could not be said to select it. Aside from theology, elect is popularly confined to the political sense; as, a free people elect their own rulers. Cull, from the Latin colligere, commonly means to collect, as well as to select. In a garden we cull the choicest flowers.

Antonyms:

cast away, decline, dismiss, refuse, repudiate, cast out, disclaim, leave, reject, throw aside.

Prepositions:

Choose from or from among the number; choose out of the army; choose between (or betwixt) two; among many; choose for the purpose.

* * * * *

CIRCUMLOCUTION.

Synonyms:

diffuseness, prolixity, surplusage, verbiage, periphrasis, redundance, tautology, verbosity, pleonasm, redundancy, tediousness, wordiness.

Circumlocution and periphrasis are roundabout ways of expressing thought; circumlocution is the more common, periphrasis the more technical word. Constant circumlocution produces an affected and heavy style; occasionally, skilful periphrasis conduces both to beauty and to simplicity. Etymologically, diffuseness is a scattering, both of words and thought; redundancy is an overflow. Prolixity goes into endless petty details, without selection or perspective. Pleonasm is the expression of an idea already plainly implied; tautology is the restatement in other words of an idea already stated, or a useless repetition of a word or words. Pleonasm may add emphasis; tautology is always a fault. "I saw it with my eyes" is a pleonasm; "all the members agreed unanimously" is tautology. Verbiage is the use of mere words without thought. Verbosity and wordiness denote an excess of words in proportion to the thought. Tediousness is the sure result of any of these faults of style.

Antonyms:

brevity, compression, condensation, plainness, succinctness, compactness, conciseness, directness, shortness, terseness.

* * * * *

CIRCUMSTANCE.

Synonyms:

accompaniment, fact, item, point, concomitant, feature, occurrence, position, detail, incident, particular, situation. event,

A circumstance (L. circum, around, and sto, stand), is something existing or occurring in connection with or relation to some other fact or event, modifying or throwing light upon the principal matter without affecting its essential character; an accompaniment is something that unites with the principal matter, tho not necessary to it; as, the piano accompaniment to a song; a concomitant goes with a thing in natural connection, but in a subordinate capacity, or perhaps in contrast; as, cheerfulness is a concomitant of virtue. A circumstance is not strictly, nor usually, an occasion, condition, effect, or result. (See these words under CAUSE.) Nor is the circumstance properly an incident. (See under ACCIDENT.) We say, "My decision will depend upon circumstances"—not "upon incidents." That a man wore a blue necktie would not probably be the cause, occasion, condition, or concomitant of his committing murder; but it might be a very important circumstance in identifying him as the murderer. All the circumstances make up the situation. A certain disease is the cause of a man's death; his suffering is an incident; that he is in his own home, that he has good medical attendance, careful nursing, etc., are consolatory circumstances. With the same idea of subordination, we often say, "This is not a circumstance to that." So a person is said to be in easy circumstances. Compare EVENT.

Prepositions:

"Mere situation is expressed by 'in the circumstances'; action affected is performed 'under the circumstances.'" Ṃ

* * * * *

CLASS.

Synonyms:

association, circle, clique, company, grade, rank, caste, clan, club, coterie, order, set.

A class is a number or body of persons or objects having common pursuits, purposes, attributes, or characteristics. A caste is hereditary; a class may be independent of lineage or descent; membership in a caste is supposed to be for life; membership in a class may be very transient; a religious and ceremonial sacredness attaches to the caste, as not to the class. The rich and the poor form separate classes; yet individuals are constantly passing from each to the other; the classes in a college remain the same, but their membership changes every year. We speak of rank among hereditary nobility or military officers; of various orders of the priesthood; by accommodation, we may refer in a general way to the higher ranks, the lower orders of any society. Grade implies some regular scale of valuation, and some inherent qualities for which a person or thing is placed higher or lower in the scale; as, the coarser and finer grades of wool; a man of an inferior grade. A coterie is a small company of persons of similar tastes, who meet frequently in an informal way, rather for social enjoyment than for any serious purpose. Clique has always an unfavorable meaning. A clique is always fractional, implying some greater gathering of which it is a part; the association breaks up into cliques. Persons unite in a coterie through simple liking for one another; they withdraw into a clique largely through aversion to outsiders. A set, while exclusive, is more extensive than a clique, and chiefly of persons who are united by common social station, etc. Circle is similar in meaning to set, but of wider application; we speak of scientific and religious as well as of social circles.

Prepositions:

A class of merchants; the senior class at (sometimes of) Harvard; the classes in college.

* * * * *

CLEANSE.

Synonyms:

brush, dust, purify, scour, sponge, wash, clean, lave, rinse, scrub, sweep, wipe. disinfect, mop,

To clean is to make clean by removing dirt, impurities, or soil of any kind. Cleanse implies a worse condition to start from, and more to do, than clean. Hercules cleansed the Augean stables. Cleanse is especially applied to purifying processes where liquid is used, as in the flushing of a street, etc. We brush clothing if dusty, sponge it, or sponge it off, if soiled; or sponge off a spot. Furniture, books, etc., are dusted; floors are mopped or scrubbed; metallic utensils are scoured; a room is swept; soiled garments are washed; foul air or water is purified. Cleanse and purify are used extensively in a moral sense; wash in that sense is archaic. Compare AMEND.

Antonyms:

befoul, bespatter, debase, deprave, soil, stain, taint, besmear, contaminate, defile, pollute, spoil, sully, vitiate. besmirch, corrupt,

Prepositions:

Cleanse of or from physical or moral defilement; cleanse with an instrument; by an agent; the room was cleansed by the attendants with soap and water.

* * * * *

CLEAR.

Synonyms:

apparent, intelligible, pellucid, transparent, diaphanous, limpid, perspicuous, unadorned, distinct, lucid, plain, unambiguous, evident, manifest, straightforward, unequivocal, explicit, obvious, translucent, unmistakable.

Clear (L. clarus, bright, brilliant) primarily refers to that which shines, and impresses the mind through the eye with a sense of luster or splendor. A substance is said to be clear that offers no impediment to vision—is not dim, dark, or obscure. Transparent refers to the medium through which a substance is seen, clear to the substance itself, without reference to anything to be seen through it; we speak of a stream as clear when we think of the water itself; we speak of it as transparent with reference to the ease with which we see the pebbles at the bottom. Clear is also said of that which comes to the senses without dimness, dulness, obstruction, or obscurity, so that there is no uncertainty as to its exact form, character, or meaning, with something of the brightness or brilliancy implied in the primary meaning of the word clear; as, the outlines of the ship were clear against the sky; a clear view; a clear note; "clear as a bell;" a clear, frosty air; a clear sky; a clear statement; hence, the word is used for that which is free from any kind of obstruction; as, a clear field. Lucid and pellucid refer to a shining clearness, as of crystal. A transparent body allows the forms and colors of objects beyond to be seen through it; a translucent body allows light to pass through, but may not permit forms and colors to be distinguished; plate glass is transparent, ground glass is translucent. Limpid refers to a liquid clearness, or that which suggests it; as, limpid streams. That which is distinct is well defined, especially in outline, each part or object standing or seeming apart from any other, not confused, indefinite, or blurred; distinct enunciation enables the hearer to catch every word or vocal sound without perplexity or confusion; a distinct statement is free from indefiniteness or ambiguity; a distinct apprehension of a thought leaves the mind in no doubt or uncertainty regarding it. That is plain, in the sense here considered, which is, as it were, level to the thought, so that one goes straight on without difficulty or hindrance; as, plain language; a plain statement; a clear explanation. Perspicuous is often equivalent to plain, but plain never wholly loses the meaning of unadorned, so that we can say the style is perspicuous tho highly ornate, when we could not call it at once ornate and plain. Compare EVIDENT.

Antonyms:

ambiguous, dim, foggy, mysterious, opaque, unintelligible, cloudy, dubious, indistinct, obscure, turbid, vague.

Prepositions:

Clear to the mind; clear in argument; clear of or from annoyances.

* * * * *

CLEVER.

Synonyms:

able, capable, happy, keen, sharp, adroit, dexterous, ingenious, knowing, skilful, apt, expert, intellectual, quick, smart, bright, gifted, intelligent, quick-witted, talented.

Clever, as used in England, especially implies an aptitude for study or learning, and for excellent tho not preeminent mental achievement. The early New England usage as implying simple and weak good nature has largely affected the use of the word throughout the United States, where it has never been much in favor. Smart, indicating dashing ability, is now coming to have a suggestion of unscrupulousness, similar to that of the word sharp, which makes its use a doubtful compliment. The discriminating use of such words as able, gifted, talented, etc., is greatly preferable to an excessive use of the word clever. Compare ACUMEN; ASTUTE; POWER.

Antonyms:

awkward, clumsy, foolish, ignorant, slow, thick-headed, bungling, dull, idiotic, senseless, stupid, witless.

* * * * *

COLLISION.

Synonyms:

clash, concussion, contact, impact, opposition, clashing, conflict, encounter, meeting, shock.

Collision, the act or fact of striking violently together, is the result of motion or action, and is sudden and momentary; contact may be a condition of rest, and be continuous and permanent; collision is sudden and violent contact. Concussion is often by transmitted force rather than by direct impact; two railway-trains come into collision; an explosion of dynamite shatters neighboring windows by concussion. Impact is the blow given by the striking body; as, the impact of the cannon-shot upon the target. An encounter is always violent, and generally hostile. Meeting is neutral, and may be of the dearest friends or of the bitterest foes; of objects, of persons, or of opinions; of two or of a multitude. Shock is the result of collision. In the figurative use, we speak of clashing of views, collision of persons. Opposition is used chiefly of persons, more rarely of opinions or interests; conflict is used indifferently of all.

Antonyms:

agreement, coincidence, concord, conformity, unison, amity, concert, concurrence, harmony, unity.

Prepositions:

Collision of one object with another; of or between opposing objects.

* * * * *

COMFORTABLE.

Synonyms:

agreeable, cheery, genial, snug, at ease, commodious, pleasant, well-off, at rest, contented, satisfactory, well-provided, cheerful, convenient, satisfied, well-to-do.

A person is comfortable in mind when contented and measurably satisfied. A little additional brightness makes him cheerful. He is comfortable in body when free from pain, quiet, at ease, at rest. He is comfortable in circumstances, or in comfortable circumstances, when things about him are generally agreeable and satisfactory, usually with the suggestion of sufficient means to secure that result.

Antonyms:

cheerless, discontented, distressed, forlorn, uncomfortable, disagreeable, dissatisfied, dreary, miserable, wretched.

* * * * *

COMMIT.

Synonyms:

assign, confide, consign, entrust, relegate, trust.

Commit, in the sense here considered, is to give in charge, put into care or keeping; to confide or entrust is to commit especially to one's fidelity, confide being used chiefly of mental or spiritual, entrust also of material things; we assign a duty, confide a secret, entrust a treasure; we commit thoughts to writing; commit a paper to the flames, a body to the earth; a prisoner is committed to jail. Consign is a formal word in mercantile use; as, to consign goods to an agent. Religiously, we consign the body to the grave, commit the soul to God. Compare DO.

Prepositions:

Commit to a friend for safe-keeping; in law, commit to prison; for trial; without bail; in default of bail; on suspicion.

* * * * *

COMPANY.

Synonyms:

assemblage, concourse, convocation, host, assembly, conference, crowd, meeting, collection, congregation, gathering, multitude, conclave, convention, group, throng.

Company, from the Latin cum, with, and panis, bread, denotes primarily the association of those who eat at a common table, or the persons so associated, table-companions, messmates, friends, and hence is widely extended to include any association of those united permanently or temporarily, for business, pleasure, festivity, travel, etc., or by sorrow, misfortune, or wrong; company may denote an indefinite number (ordinarily more than two), but less than a multitude; in the military sense a company is a limited and definite number of men; company implies more unity of feeling and purpose than crowd, and is a less formal and more familiar word than assemblage or assembly. An assemblage may be of persons or of objects; an assembly is always of persons. An assemblage is promiscuous and unorganized; an assembly is organized and united in some common purpose. A conclave is a secret assembly. A convocation is an assembly called by authority for a special purpose; the term convention suggests less dependence upon any superior authority or summons. A group is small in number and distinct in outline, clearly marked off from all else in space or time. Collection, crowd, gathering, group, and multitude have the unorganized and promiscuous character of the assemblage; the other terms come under the general idea of assembly. Congregation is now almost exclusively religious; meeting is often so used, but is less restricted, as we may speak of a meeting of armed men. Gathering refers to a coming together, commonly of numbers, from far and near; as, the gathering of the Scottish clans.

Antonyms:

dispersion, loneliness, privacy, retirement, seclusion, solitude.

* * * * *

COMPEL.

Synonyms:

coerce, drive, make, oblige. constrain, force, necessitate,

To compel one to an act is to secure its performance by the use of irresistible physical or moral force. Force implies primarily an actual physical process, absolutely subduing all resistance. Coerce implies the actual or potential use of so much force as may be necessary to secure the surrender of the will; the American secessionists contended that the Federal government had no right to coerce a State. Constrain implies the yielding of judgment and will, and in some cases of inclination or affection, to an overmastering power; as, "the love of Christ constraineth us," 2 Cor. v, 14. Compare DRIVE; INFLUENCE.

Antonyms:

See synonyms for HINDER.

Prepositions:

The soldiers were compelled to desertion: preferably with the infinitive, compelled to desert.

* * * * *

COMPLAIN.

Synonyms:

croak, growl, grunt, remonstrate, find fault, grumble, murmur, repine.

To complain is to give utterance to dissatisfaction or objection, express a sense of wrong or ill treatment. One complains of a real or assumed grievance; he may murmur through mere peevishness or ill temper; he repines, with vain distress, at the irrevocable or the inevitable. Complaining is by speech or writing; murmuring is commonly said of half-repressed utterance; repining of the mental act alone. One may complain of an offense to the offender or to others; he remonstrates with the offender only. Complain has a formal and legal meaning, which the other words have not, signifying to make a formal accusation, present a specific charge; the same is true of the noun complaint.

Antonyms:

applaud, approve, commend, eulogize, laud, praise.

Prepositions:

Complain of a thing to a person; of one person to another, of or against a person for an act; to an officer; before the court; about a thing.

* * * * *

COMPLEX.

Synonyms:

abstruse, confused, intricate, mixed, complicated, conglomerate, involved, multiform, composite, entangled, manifold, obscure, compound, heterogeneous, mingled, tangled.

That is complex which is made up of several connected parts. That is compound in which the parts are not merely connected, but fused, or otherwise combined into a single substance. In a composite object the different parts have less of unity than in that which is complex or compound, but maintain their distinct individuality. In a heterogeneous body unlike parts or particles are intermingled, often without apparent order or plan. Conglomerate (literally, globed together) is said of a confused mingling of masses or lumps of various substances. The New England pudding-stone is a conglomerate rock. In a complex object the arrangement and relation of parts may be perfectly clear; in a complicated mechanism the parts are so numerous, or so combined, that the mind can not readily grasp their mutual relations; in an intricate arrangement the parts are so intertwined that it is difficult to follow their windings; things are involved which are rolled together so as not to be easily separated, either in thought or in fact; things which are tangled or entangled mutually hold and draw upon each other. The conception of a material object is usually complex, involving form, color, size, and other elements; a clock is a complicated mechanism; the Gordian knot was intricate; the twining serpents of the Laocoon are involved. We speak of an abstruse statement, a complex conception, a confused heap, a heterogeneous mass, a tangled skein, an intricate problem; of composite architecture, an involved sentence; of the complicated or intricate accounts of a great business, the entangled accounts of an incompetent or dishonest bookkeeper.

Antonyms:

clear, homogeneous, plain, uncombined, uniform, direct, obvious, simple, uncompounded, unraveled.

* * * * *

CONDEMN.

Synonyms:

blame, convict, doom, reprove, censure, denounce, reprobate, sentence.

To condemn is to pass judicial sentence or render judgment or decision against. We may censure silently; we condemn ordinarily by open and formal utterance. Condemn is more final than blame or censure; a condemned criminal has had his trial; a condemned building can not stand; a condemned ship can not sail. A person is convicted when his guilt is made clearly manifest to others; in somewhat archaic use, a person is said to be convicted when guilt is brought clearly home to his own conscience (convict in this sense being allied with convince, which see under PERSUADE); in legal usage one is said to be convicted only by the verdict of a jury. In stating the penalty of an offense, the legal word sentence is now more common than condemn; as, he was sentenced to imprisonment; but it is good usage to say, he was condemned to imprisonment. To denounce is to make public or official declaration against, especially in a violent and threatening manner.

From the pulpits in the northern States Burr was denounced as an assassin.

COFFIN Building the Nation ch. 10, p. 137. [H. '83.]

To doom is to condemn solemnly and consign to evil or destruction or to predetermine to an evil destiny; an inferior race in presence of a superior is doomed to subjugation or extinction. Compare ARRAIGN; REPROVE.

Antonyms:

absolve, applaud, exonerate, pardon, acquit, approve, justify, praise.

Prepositions:

The bandit was condemned to death for his crime.

* * * * *

CONFESS.

Synonyms:

accept, allow, concede, grant, acknowledge, avow, disclose, own, admit, certify, endorse, recognize.

We accept another's statement; admit any point made against us; acknowledge what we have said or done, good or bad; avow our individual beliefs or feelings; certify to facts within our knowledge; confess our own faults; endorse a friend's note or statement; grant a request; own our faults or obligations; recognize lawful authority; concede a claim. Confess has a high and sacred use in the religious sense; as, to confess Christ before men. It may have also a playful sense (often with to); as, one confesses to a weakness for confectionery. The chief present use of the word, however, is in the sense of making known to others one's own wrong-doing; in this sense confess is stronger than acknowledge or admit, and more specific than own; a person admits a mistake; acknowledges a fault; confesses sin or crime. Compare APOLOGY; AVOW.

Antonyms:

cloak, deny, disown, hide, screen, conceal, disavow, dissemble, mask, secrete, cover, disguise, dissimulate, repudiate, veil.

* * * * *

CONFIRM.

Synonyms:

assure, fix, sanction, substantiate, corroborate, prove, settle, sustain, establish, ratify, strengthen, uphold.

Confirm (L. con, together, and firmus, firm) is to add firmness or give stability to. Both confirm and corroborate presuppose something already existing to which the confirmation or corroboration is added. Testimony is corroborated by concurrent testimony or by circumstances; confirmed by established facts. That which is thoroughly proved is said to be established; so is that which is official and has adequate power behind it; as, the established government; the established church. The continents are fixed. A treaty is ratified; an appointment confirmed. An act is sanctioned by any person or authority that passes upon it approvingly. A statement is substantiated; a report confirmed; a controversy settled; the decision of a lower court sustained by a higher. Just government should be upheld. The beneficent results of Christianity confirm our faith in it as a divine revelation.

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15     Next Part
Home - Random Browse