Synonym Chooser

How does the adjective accidental differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of accidental are casual, contingent, and fortuitous. While all these words mean "not amenable to planning or prediction," accidental stresses chance.

any resemblance to actual persons is entirely accidental

When might casual be a better fit than accidental?

In some situations, the words casual and accidental are roughly equivalent. However, casual stresses lack of real or apparent premeditation or intent.

a casual encounter with a stranger

When is it sensible to use contingent instead of accidental?

While in some cases nearly identical to accidental, contingent suggests possibility of happening but stresses uncertainty and dependence on other future events for existence or occurrence.

the contingent effects of the proposed law

When can fortuitous be used instead of accidental?

While the synonyms fortuitous and accidental are close in meaning, fortuitous so strongly suggests chance that it often connotes entire absence of cause.

a series of fortuitous events

Thesaurus Entries Near accidental

Cite this Entry

“Accidental.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Apr. 2024.

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