Definition of antonym in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈantənɪm/


A word opposite in meaning to another (e.g. bad and good).
Example sentences
  • The thesaurus provides synonyms, antonyms and related words, and is accessed by just right-clicking on the word to be looked up, and selecting ‘Thesaurus’ from the right-mouse menu.
  • What exactly are the differences between synonyms, antonyms, and homonyms?
  • The words aren't precise antonyms, but they're somewhat close to it.



Pronunciation: /anˈtɒnɪməs/
Example sentences
  • The intention has not been to define or discriminate them, but to arrange them in synonymous and antonymous groups; it serves as both a word-finder and a prompter of the memory regarding words one knows but could not recall to mind.
  • We pick up the occasional word - ‘ethical… responsible… trustworthy’ - and we sense that Bill is compiling an antonymous description of the young man.
  • So whatever is meant by “absolutism” is antonymous to relativism.


Pronunciation: /anˈtɒnəmi/
Example sentences
  • It will be essential reading for scholars interested in antonymy and corpus linguistics.
  • Having identified the discourse functions of antonymy in adult writing and speech, I'm now examining children's language to discover how and when ‘opposites’ are first learnt.
  • We have relations of meaning such as synonymy and antonymy, polysemy and homonymy, ways of organizing the vocabulary.


Mid 19th century: from French antonyme, from ant- (from Greek anti- 'against') + Greek onuma 'a name'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ant|onym

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.