ascetic 1 of 2

variants also ascetical

ascetic

2 of 2

noun

Synonym Chooser

How does the adjective ascetic contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of ascetic are austere, severe, and stern. While all these words mean "given to or marked by strict discipline and firm restraint," ascetic implies abstention from pleasure and comfort or self-indulgence as spiritual discipline.

the ascetic life of the monks

When could austere be used to replace ascetic?

The words austere and ascetic are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, austere stresses absence of warmth, color, or feeling and may apply to rigorous restraint, simplicity, or self-denial.

living an austere life in the country

When is it sensible to use severe instead of ascetic?

The synonyms severe and ascetic are sometimes interchangeable, but severe implies standards enforced without indulgence or laxity and may suggest harshness.

severe military discipline

Where would stern be a reasonable alternative to ascetic?

While in some cases nearly identical to ascetic, stern stresses inflexibility and inexorability of temper or character.

stern arbiters of public morality

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Cite this Entry

“Ascetic.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/ascetic. Accessed 22 Jul. 2024.

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