Thesaurus

awkward

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of awkward

2 showing or marked by a lack of skill and tact (as in dealing with a situation)
  • her awkward handling of the seating arrangements at the wedding reception resulted in many hurt feelings

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3 causing embarrassment
  • the awkward situation of having to listen as your host and hostess quarrel loudly in the next room

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4 causing difficulty, discomfort, or annoyance
  • our surprise guests came at a very awkward time

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5 difficult to use or operate especially because of size, weight, or design
  • that manual can opener is awkward to hold

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6 having or showing an inability to move in a graceful manner
  • an awkward person who is always tripping over herself

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7 lacking or showing a lack of nimbleness in using one's hands
  • an awkward catch of a fly ball

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See the Dictionary Definition 

Choose the Right Synonym for awkward

awkward, clumsy, maladroit, inept, gauche mean not marked by ease (as of performance, movement, or social conduct). awkward is widely applicable and may suggest unhandiness, inconvenience, lack of muscular control, embarrassment, or lack of tact. periods of awkward silence clumsy implies stiffness and heaviness and so may connote inflexibility, unwieldiness, or lack of ordinary skill. a clumsy mechanic maladroit suggests a tendency to create awkward situations. a maladroit politician inept often implies complete failure or inadequacy. a hopelessly inept defense attorney gauche implies the effects of shyness, inexperience, or ill breeding. felt gauche and unsophisticated at formal parties

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Time Traveler for awkward

Time Traveler

The first known use of awkward was in 1530

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Cite this Entry

“Awkward.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/awkwardly. Accessed 20 Feb. 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on awkward

Dictionary: Definition of awkward

Spanish Central: Translation of awkward

Nglish: Translation of awkward for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of awkward for Arabic Speakers

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