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Synonyms of keen in English:


  • 1 his publishers were keen to capitalize on his success
    eager, anxious, intent, impatient, determined, ambitious, champing at the bit
    informal raring, itching, dying
    [Antonyms] reluctant
  • 2 a keen birdwatcher
    enthusiastic, avid, eager, ardent, passionate, fervent, impassioned;
    conscientious, committed, dedicated, zealous
    [Antonyms] apathetic, halfhearted
  • 3 they are keen on horses a girl he was keen on
    enthusiastic about, interested in, passionate about;
    attracted to, fond of, taken with, smitten with, enamored of, infatuated with
    informal struck on, hot on/for, mad about, crazy about, nuts about
    [Antonyms] indifferent, unenthusiastic
  • 4 a keen cutting edge
    sharp, sharpened, honed, razor-sharp
    [Antonyms] blunt
  • 5 keen eyesight
    acute, sharp, discerning, sensitive, perceptive, clear
    [Antonyms] weak
  • 7 a keen wind
    [Antonyms] gentle
  • 8 a keen sense of duty
    intense, acute, fierce, passionate, burning, fervent, ardent, strong, powerful
  • Choose the right word

    keen, acute, astute, penetrating, perspicacious, sharp, shrewd
    A knife can be sharp, even keen, but it can't be astute. While keen and sharp mean having a fine point or edge, they also pertain to mental agility and perceptiveness. You might describe someone as having a keen mind, which suggests the ability to grapple with complex problems, or to observe details and see them as part of a larger pattern ( a keen appreciation of what victory would mean for the Democratic party) or a keen wit, which suggests an incisive or stimulating sense of humor. Someone who is sharp has an alert and rational mind, but is not necessarily well grounded in a particular field and may in some cases be cunning or devious ( sharp enough to see how the situation might be turned to her advantage). An astute mind, in contrast, is one that has a thorough and profound understanding of a given subject or field ( an astute understanding of the legal principles involved). Like sharp, shrewd implies both practicality and cleverness, but with an undercurrent of self-interest ( a shrewd salesperson). Acute is close in meaning to keen, but with more emphasis on sensitivity and the ability to make subtle distinctions ( an acute sense of smell). While a keen mind might see only superficial details, a penetrating mind would focus on underlying causes ( a penetrating analysis of the plan's feasibility). Perspicacious is the most formal of these terms, meaning both perceptive and discerning ( a perspicacious remark; perspicacious judgment).
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