Synonyms & Antonyms of baffle

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 to prevent from achieving a goal
  • the language barrier baffled everyone and discouraged us from attempting another teleconference

Synonyms for baffle

Words Related to baffle

Near Antonyms for baffle

Antonyms for baffle

2 to throw into a state of mental uncertainty
  • she was baffled by the wording of the clause in the insurance policy

Synonyms for baffle

Words Related to baffle

Phrases Synonymous with baffle

Near Antonyms for baffle



Synonyms of baffle (Entry 2 of 2)

as in muffler

Synonyms & Near Synonyms for baffle

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About baffle

How does the verb baffle differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of baffle are balk, foil, frustrate, and thwart. While all these words mean "to check or defeat another's plan or block achievement of a goal," baffle implies frustration by confusing or puzzling.

baffled by the maze of rules and regulations

When would balk be a good substitute for baffle?

While in some cases nearly identical to baffle, balk suggests the interposing of obstacles or hindrances.

officials felt that legal restrictions had balked their efforts to control crime

When can foil be used instead of baffle?

Although the words foil and baffle have much in common, foil implies checking or defeating so as to discourage further effort.

foiled by her parents, he stopped trying to see her

Where would frustrate be a reasonable alternative to baffle?

The synonyms frustrate and baffle are sometimes interchangeable, but frustrate implies making vain or ineffectual all efforts however vigorous or persistent.

frustrated attempts at government reform

When is thwart a more appropriate choice than baffle?

The words thwart and baffle are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, thwart suggests frustration or checking by crossing or opposing.

the army thwarted his attempt at a coup

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About baffle

Time Traveler for baffle

Time Traveler

The first known use of baffle was in 1675

See more words from the same year

Thesaurus Entries Near baffle




See More Nearby Entries 

Cite this Entry

“Baffle.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on baffle

Nglish: Translation of baffle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of baffle for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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