Synonyms

Synonyms are different words that have identical or similar meanings. Synonymy is one of the least understood semantic relationships in language, mostly because perfect synonyms are rare and “near synonyms” are numerous. Near synonyms are words that are very similar in meaning but may be used in slightly different ways, such as the words ‘high’ and ‘tall’. Some linguists argue that no two synonyms are exactly identical since phonic qualities, etymology, and usage can still differ between words. Regardless, synonyms can help enhance communication in situations where some words are more appropriate or powerful than others despite similar meanings.