9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[an-tuh-nim] /ˈæn tə nɪm/
a word opposite in meaning to another. Fast is an antonym of slow.
Compare synonym (def 1).
Origin of antonym
1865-70; ant- + (syn)onym
Related forms
[an-ton-uh-muh s] /ænˈtɒn ə məs/ (Show IPA),
antonymic, adjective
antonymy, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for antonym
  • The term anesthetic is an antonym of aesthetic.
  • This is probably the result of the association of covert with its antonym overt, which is pronounced with a long o.
  • Opposites are also referred to as antonyms.
  • The antonym of design is not evolution, the antonyms of design are accident and coincidence.
  • Thus, under goodness they refer to badness as an antonym.
  • The furnishings inside were an antonym for plush.
  • Not light as in the antonym of heavy, but light as in photon radiation.
  • Tasteless is the antonym of both tasteful and tasty: The tasteless furnishings.
  • Though considered jargon by some, it's a useful antonym to reactive.
  • Identify and apply the meanings of the terms antonym, synonym, and homophone.
British Dictionary definitions for antonym


a word that means the opposite of another word: ``empty'' is an antonym of ``full''
Derived Forms
antonymous (ænˈtɒnɪməs) adjective
Word Origin
C19: from Greek antōnumia, from anti- + onoma name
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for antonym

1867, coined to serve as opposite of synonym, from Greek anti- "equal to, instead of, opposite" (see anti-) + -onym "name" (see name (n.)). Perhaps introduced to English in the book "Synonyms and Antonyms" (1867) by the Ven. C.J. Smith, M.A.

UNDER the head of Synonyms and Antonyms, Archdeacon Smith arranges words which form an antithesis to one another. The word "antonym" is, we believe, a new formation but useful. ["Journal of Sacred Literature," July 1867]
French antonyme (1842), German antonym (by 1859) are older. The un-Greek alternative counterterm has been left to fade.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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