Definition of synonym in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsinəˌnim/


1A word or phrase that means exactly or nearly the same as another word or phrase in the same language, for example shut is a synonym of close.
Example sentences
  • It was common ground that the closest synonym of damage is harm.
  • He points out that I used hue in the sub-title of my article about colour words almost as a synonym for colour.
  • Some think that considerations like this show that there are no genuine synonyms in natural languages.
alternate, substitute, alternative, equivalent, euphemism
1.1A person or thing so closely associated with a particular quality or idea that the mention of their name calls it to mind: the Victorian age is a synonym for sexual puritanism
1.2 Biology A taxonomic name that has the same application as another, especially one that has been superseded and is no longer valid.
Example sentences
  • The Choristodera in general, and particularly the Champsosauridae, are plagued with bad names - junior synonyms of unrelated genera and the like.
  • Thus, we use the name P. ultima as the senior synonym of P. praetriangularis.
  • Molecular studies support the monophyly of all these taxa as Ecdysozoa, so the term Spiralia is sometimes used as a synonym for the non-molting protostomes, Lophotrochozoa.



Pronunciation: /ˌsinəˈnimik/
Example sentences
  • This ideal was to be Flaubert's as well, and it seems to contradict the endless synonymic amplifications so typical of Hugo's own style.
  • This database of the synonymic list represents many additions and changes, and represents a complete listing for all described Odonata of North, Middle, and South America.
  • Their task is to check the synonymic lists that are generated by the Project Coordinator, refer them where appropriate to their colleagues, and report any matters of concern back to the Project Coordinator.


Pronunciation: /ˌsinəˈnimədē/
Example sentences
  • You can bet that it ended up suggesting a synonymity of liquor with very good times to a much younger age group and a far wider social spectrum.
  • The problem, as Mates points out, is that if anybody even doubts that "whoever believes that D believes thatD", then a traditionalist's explanation of synonymity is wrong.
  • He wrote about perspective phenomena, but the etymological synonymity of optics and perspective has often led to the misconception that he wrote about perspective constructions.


Late Middle English: via Latin from Greek sunōnumon, neuter (used as a noun) of the adjective sunōnumos, from sun- 'with' + onuma 'name'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: syn·o·nym

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