Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

Thesaurus

austere

adjective

Synonyms and Antonyms of austere

  1. 1 given to exacting standards of discipline and self-restraint <an austere conductor who is as tough on himself as he is on the orchestra> Synonyms severe, authoritarian, flinty, hard, harsh, heavy-handed, ramrod, rigid, rigorous, stern, strict, toughRelated Words demanding, exacting; uncharitable, unforgiving; adamant, adamantine, callous, hardened, hard-hearted, hard-line, immovable, implacable, inflexible, merciless, ossified, pitiless, relentless, rock-ribbed, stiff, unbending, uncompromising, unrelenting, unsparing, unyielding; dour, gruff; ascetic (also ascetical), monastic, monkish; browbeating, bullying; determined, firm, resolved, single-minded, steadfast, unflinching; dogged, intractable, obstinate, relentlessNear Antonyms easy, easygoing, laid-back, undemanding; charitable, kind, merciful, mild, patient, soft, softhearted; accepting, compromising, yielding; responsive, willing; acquiescent, agreeable, amenable, complaisant, compliant, flexible, pliable, pliantAntonyms clement, forbearing, gentle, indulgent, lax, lenient, tolerant

  2. 2 harsh and threatening in manner or appearance <an austere fortress at the top of some formidable cliffs> Synonyms grim, dour, fierce, flinty, forbidding, gruff, intimidating, lowering (also louring), rough, rugged, severe, stark, steely, stern, ungentleRelated Words bleak, cold, hostile, inhospitable, inimical, unfriendly, unsympathetic; adamant, bound, determined, firm, intent, purposeful, resolute, resolved, steadfast, unflinching; fixed, hard, hardened, hardheaded, immovable, implacable, inflexible, ironhanded, mulish, obdurate, obstinate, rigid, self-willed, set, stiff, stubborn, unbending, uncompromising, unrelenting, unyielding, willful (or wilful); immutable, unchangeable; black, cheerless, dark, gloomy, glum, joyless, melancholic, moody, morose, sulky, sullen, surly; brooding, grave, humorless, melancholy, serious, sober, sobersided, solemn, somber (or sombre), staid, unsmiling, weightyNear Antonyms bland, meek, mellow, soft, soothing; easy, quiet, tranquil; agreeable, bright, cheerful, inviting, pleasant, pleasing, sweet; glad, happy, lighthearted, merry, mirthful, sunny; featherbrained, flighty, frivolous, giddy, goofy, harebrained, light-headed, playful, scatterbrained, sillyAntonyms benign, benignant, gentle, mild, nonintimidating, tender

  3. 3 providing only the essentials and nothing fancy or luxurious <for the private office of the CEO of the large corporation, the room is unexpectedly austere> Synonyms no-frills, spartan, starkRelated Words plain, simple, unadorned, undecorated, unelaborate, unfancyNear Antonyms adorned, decorated, elaborate, fancyAntonyms deluxe, Lucullan (also Lucullian), luxe, luxurious, plush




Learn More about austere


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up austere? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to proceed clumsily or ineffectually

Get Word of the Day daily email!