• synonyms


See more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
  1. a word opposite in meaning to another. Fast is an antonym of slow.Compare synonym(def 1).

Origin of antonym

First recorded in 1865–70; ant- + (syn)onym
Related formsan·ton·y·mous [an-ton-uh-muh s] /ænˈtɒn ə məs/, an·to·nym·ic, adjectivean·ton·y·my, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for antonyms

Historical Examples

  • In the series we have prepared, the verbs are either synonyms or antonyms.

    Montessori Elementary Materials

    Maria Montessori

  • Antonyms: unamenable, unaccountable, disobedient, insubmissive.

    Putnam's Word Book

    Louis A. Flemming

  • Antonyms are words that are opposed to another word in meaning.

    Putnam's Word Book

    Louis A. Flemming

  • In many instances, however, a list of antonyms is unnecessary.

    Putnam's Word Book

    Louis A. Flemming

  • Antonyms: disconnection, detachment, isolation, incoherence.

    Putnam's Word Book

    Louis A. Flemming

British Dictionary definitions for antonyms


  1. a word that means the opposite of another word``empty'' is an antonym of ``full''
Derived Formsantonymous (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

Word Origin and History for antonyms



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

antonyms in Culture



Two words with opposite meanings. Cold and hot are antonyms; so are small and large. (Compare synonyms.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.