word or phrase that means exactly or nearly the same as another word or phrase in the same language

A synonym is a word (or a phrase) which means the same thing as another word or phrase.[1][2]


Synonyms can be nouns, verbs, adverbs or adjectives, but both words must be of the same part of speech. That means, only a noun can be a synonym of another noun, only a verb can be a synonym of another verb, and so on.

One can find sets of synonyms in a thesaurus, which is a book listing groups of related words.

Some words are near-synonyms, which have similar but not exactly the same meaning.

Examples of proper nouns, such as names of these languages, having synonyms or near-synonyms include:



The word "synonym" dates back over 500 years, to late Middle English.[1] The term is derived from Latin from the Greek word sunōnumon, neuter form (used as a noun) of the adjective sunōnumos, from sun- meaning 'with' + onoma meaning 'name' in the Greek language.[1]

The meaning of the word has remained unchanged for all these centuries. There is even a saying, going back to 1892, "Once a synonym, always a synonym".[11] The word has been taught to generations of English-language students and is commonly known by the general public. Many other languages have a similar word for "synonym" with the same or similar spelling.



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Definition of synonym from Oxford Dictionaries Online., 2011. web: OD-syn Archived 2011-06-03 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. Synonym - Definition and more from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary. 2011. webpage: MW-syn.
  3. "Another word for make".
  4. Hudak, Thomas John. "Thai." The world's major languages. Routledge, 2018. 679-695.
  5. Rana, Toqir A., et al. "An Unsupervised Approach for Sentiment Analysis on Social Media Short Text Classification in Roman Urdu." Transactions on Asian and Low-Resource Language Information Processing 21.2 (2021): 1-16.
  6. Ghosh, Sujit. "Khas-kura Nepali and Cultural Consolidation in Darjeeling Hills: A Genesis." (2015).
  7. Laka Mugarza, Itziar. A brief grammar of Euskara, the Basque language. Universidad del País Vasco, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea, Euskarazko Errektoreordetza, 1996.
  8. Leap, William L. American Indian English. University of Utah Press, 2012.
  9. Farhady, Hossein, and Kobra Tavassoli. "Assessing Farsi." The companion to language assessment 4 (2013): 1790-1798.
  10. ROSS, ANDREW J. "Supplement to the Burmese (Myanmar) amber checklist and bibliography, 2020." Palaeoentomology 4.1 (2021): 057-076.
  11. Science, John Michels, American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1892, page 220, web: BG-AJ.