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Synonym Chooser

How is the word banal distinct from other similar adjectives?

Some common synonyms of banal are flat, inane, insipid, jejune, and vapid. While all these words mean "devoid of qualities that make for spirit and character," banal stresses the complete absence of freshness, novelty, or immediacy.

a banal tale of unrequited love

When might flat be a better fit than banal?

The synonyms flat and banal are sometimes interchangeable, but flat applies to things that have lost their sparkle or zest.

although well-regarded in its day, the novel now seems flat

In what contexts can inane take the place of banal?

Although the words inane and banal have much in common, inane implies a lack of any significant or convincing quality.

an inane interpretation of the play

When is insipid a more appropriate choice than banal?

While in some cases nearly identical to banal, insipid implies a lack of sufficient taste or savor to please or interest.

an insipid romance with platitudes on every page

When is it sensible to use jejune instead of banal?

While the synonyms jejune and banal are close in meaning, jejune suggests a lack of rewarding or satisfying substance.

a jejune and gassy speech

When would vapid be a good substitute for banal?

The words vapid and banal can be used in similar contexts, but vapid suggests a lack of liveliness, force, or spirit.

an exciting story given a vapid treatment

Thesaurus Entries Near banal

Cite this Entry

“Banal.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/banal. Accessed 21 Jun. 2024.

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