Synonym of the day

Synonym of the day

Wednesday, July 07, 2021


adjective [ kuhn-ten-shuhs ]

contentious is another word for controversial

The adjectives controversial and contentious both describe something that provokes differences of opinion or disagreements. A controversial issue, statement, or decision is one about which the public has strong and divergent opinions, often longstanding and much-discussed, and not likely to be reconciled any time soon. A contentious issue or topic is one that causes conflict or strife, whether in congress, in court, or at the dinner table. A contentious debate or election, or a contentious relationship with your supervisor, would be marked by hard-fought disagreements, as would a contentious divorce or contentious custody dispute. A controversial figure is a public figure who does or says controversial things. Contentious people are simply argumentative types.

Commonly found as

contentious issue
At family reunions we all tiptoe around the contentious issue of which side of the family makes cornbread the right way.
contentious debate
It was the kind of contentious debate we expect from young law students, but it never crossed the line into incivility.

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Tuesday, July 06, 2021


endorse is a synonym of approve

verb [ en-dawrs ]

endorse is another word for approve

To approve is to speak or think favorably of someone or something: to approve the policies of the administration. In some uses, approve signifies agreement or consent; in other uses, approve conveys a more formal confirmation or sanctioning, as when the Senate promptly approves a bill. The synonym endorse is most commonly used to talk about official and usually public displays of support. When someone endorses something, they approve, support, or sustain that thing. You may hear of a newspaper endorsing a candidate in a political campaign, or, of another politician endorsing, or putting their name behind, a candidate. The putting of one’s name to something takes a more literal turn in other uses of the word: to endorse a check is to designate oneself as payee by signing it, usually on the reverse side.

Commonly found as

endorse + candidate(s)
Much to the surprise of her constituents, the governor publicly endorsed the candidate in the opposing party who was running for mayor.
strongly endorse
In an op-ed, the former chancellor of the local university strongly endorsed the cancellation of student debt.

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Monday, July 05, 2021


rankle is a synonym of irritate

verb [ rang-kuhl ]

rankle is another word for irritate

To irritate someone is to excite them to impatience or anger. This verb is commonly used to talk about an emotional disturbance that is relatively short-lived and not terribly deep—it might irritate you, for instance, if someone refuses to answer a question. The synonym rankle implies continued anger or emotional disturbance. When something rankles you, it causes keen irritation or bitter resentment, the kind that builds over time or festers. Harsh criticism from a colleague might rankle you, or eat at you, long after it is uttered. Unpleasant though all of this may be, the term's meaning has softened over time; on entering English, rankle referred to the festering or putrefaction of physical wounds.

Commonly found as

still rankle
Even though it had been years, it still rankled him that his best friend had missed his wedding and never expressed regret.
rankle in one's heart/mind
The chef’s harsh words continued to rankle in the minds of the servers as they nervously picked up their orders and hurried out of the kitchen.

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