Synonyms & Antonyms of austere

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 for austere

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Antonyms for austere

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Frequently Asked Questions About austere

How does the adjective austere contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of austere are ascetic, severe, and stern. While all these words mean "given to or marked by strict discipline and firm restraint," 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 ascetic a more appropriate choice than austere?

Although the words ascetic and austere have much in common, ascetic implies abstention from pleasure and comfort or self-indulgence as spiritual discipline.

the ascetic life of the monks

When is it sensible to use severe instead of austere?

In some situations, the words severe and austere are roughly equivalent. However, severe implies standards enforced without indulgence or laxity and may suggest harshness.

severe military discipline

When could stern be used to replace austere?

The meanings of stern and austere largely overlap; however, stern stresses inflexibility and inexorability of temper or character.

stern arbiters of public morality

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Time Traveler for austere

Time Traveler

The first known use of austere was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Austere.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on austere

Nglish: Translation of austere for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of austere for Arabic Speakers


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