similar

adjective

sim·​i·​lar ˈsi-mə-lər How to pronounce similar (audio)
ˈsim-lər
1
: having characteristics in common : strictly comparable
2
: alike in substance or essentials : corresponding
no two animal habitats are exactly similar W. H. Dowdeswell
3
: not differing in shape but only in size or position
similar triangles
similar polygons
similarly adverb
Choose the Right Synonym for similar

similar, analogous, parallel mean closely resembling each other.

similar implies the possibility of being mistaken for each other.

all the houses in the development are similar

analogous applies to things belonging in essentially different categories but nevertheless having many similarities.

analogous political systems

parallel suggests a marked likeness in the development of two things.

the parallel careers of two movie stars

Example Sentences

This month, General Electric's health-care division will begin marketing a first-of-its-kind electrocardiograph machine in the U.S. Although packed with the latest technology, the battery-powered device weighs just six pounds, half as much as the smallest ECG machine currently for sale. It will retail for a mere $2,500, an 80% markdown from products with similar capabilities. Reena Jana, Business Week, 23 & 30 Mar. 2009 There's a reason boards of directors can pluck so many CEOs out of one company and plop them into another: When it comes to management ideas and tools, many companies are surprisingly similar. They have the same hierarchies and budgeting processes. Jena McGregor, Business Week, 8 Oct. 2007 Though the trends were similar, the new patterns of consumption varied both regionally and nationally, as they continue to do today. John Brewer, New York Review of Books, 30 Nov. 2006 Our cats are similar in size. You two look very similar to each other. They had similar experiences growing up, even though they came from vastly different backgrounds. We got remarkably similar results. I was going to say something similar. I would have reacted in a similar way if it had happened to me. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Another woman alleged a similar experience while under sedation at Pura Vida Medical Spa with Salata, police said. Bradford Betz, Fox News, 25 Nov. 2022 The federal government’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will funnel several hundred million more dollars to California for similar efforts. Rob Nikolewski, San Diego Union-Tribune, 25 Nov. 2022 Other studies have estimated similar results, some citing even lower figures. Kiara Alfonseca, ABC News, 23 Nov. 2022 An analysis of dirt from the reference coins showed similar results. Aylin Woodward, WSJ, 23 Nov. 2022 The three men, or some combination of them, have filed at least four cases raising similar claims before the Arizona Supreme Court since 2021 seeking to have the state's 2020 election results thrown out. Arkansas Online, 20 Nov. 2022 The three men, or some combination of them, have filed at least four cases raising similar claims before the Arizona Supreme Court since 2021 seeking to have the state’s 2020 election results thrown out. Time, 19 Nov. 2022 The three men, or some combination of them, have filed at least four cases raising similar claims before the Arizona Supreme Court since 2021 seeking to have the state's 2020 election results thrown out. Bob Christie, ajc, 19 Nov. 2022 Kelley, who did not author the post but has made similar claims in various blogs and podcasts, also did not provide tangible evidence to support his claim when contacted by USA TODAY. Nate Trela, USA TODAY, 17 Nov. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'similar.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

Etymology

French similaire, from Latin similis like, similar — more at same

First Known Use

1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of similar was in 1586

Dictionary Entries Near similar

Cite this Entry

“Similar.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/similar. Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

similar

adjective

sim·​i·​lar ˈsim-(ə-)lər How to pronounce similar (audio)
1
: having qualities in common
2
: not differing in shape but only in size or position
similar triangles
similarly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on similar

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