Thesaurus

bait

noun

Synonyms & Antonyms of bait

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 something used to attract animals to a hook or into a trap
  • cheese is the traditional bait for trapping mice

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2 something that persuades one to perform an action for pleasure or gain
  • the promise of free vacation is surefire bait to get people to agree to be chaperones for school trips

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bait

verb

Synonyms & Antonyms of bait (Entry 2 of 2)

1 to attack repeatedly with mean put-downs or insults
  • I wished the candidates would stop baiting each other and instead address the real issues

Synonyms for bait

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Phrases Synonymous with bait

2 to lead away from a usual or proper course by offering some pleasure or advantage
  • the investment scheme cunningly baits the greedy and the unscrupulous

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Verb

bait, badger, heckle, hector, chivy, hound mean to harass by efforts to break down. bait implies wanton cruelty or delight in persecuting a helpless victim. baited the chained dog badger implies pestering so as to drive a person to confusion or frenzy. badgered her father for a car heckle implies persistent annoying or belligerent interruptions of a speaker. drunks heckled the stand-up comic hector carries an implication of bullying and domineering. football players hectored by their coach chivy suggests persecution by teasing or nagging. chivied the new student mercilessly hound implies unrelenting pursuit and harassing. hounded by creditors

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Time Traveler for bait

Time Traveler

The first known use of bait was in the 13th century

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Cite this Entry

“Bait.” The Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/bait. Accessed 24 January 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on bait

Dictionary: Definition of bait

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bait

Spanish Central: Translation of bait

Nglish: Translation of bait for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bait for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about bait

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