Synonym Chooser

How does the verb acknowledge contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of acknowledge are admit, avow, confess, and own. While all these words mean "to disclose against one's will or inclination," acknowledge implies the disclosing of something that has been or might be concealed.

acknowledged an earlier peccadillo

When is it sensible to use admit instead of acknowledge?

While in some cases nearly identical to acknowledge, admit implies reluctance to disclose, grant, or concede and refers usually to facts rather than their implications.

admitted the project was over budget

When could avow be used to replace acknowledge?

Although the words avow and acknowledge have much in common, avow implies boldly declaring, often in the face of hostility, what one might be expected to be silent about.

avowed that he was a revolutionary

In what contexts can confess take the place of acknowledge?

The words confess and acknowledge are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, confess may apply to an admission of a weakness, failure, omission, or guilt.

confessed a weakness for sweets

When is own a more appropriate choice than acknowledge?

The words own and acknowledge can be used in similar contexts, but own implies acknowledging something in close relation to oneself.

must own I know little about computers

Thesaurus Entries Near acknowledge

Cite this Entry

“Acknowledge.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on acknowledge

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!