Synonym Chooser

How does the adjective brutish differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of brutish are bestial, brutal, and feral. While all these words mean "characteristic of an animal in nature, action, or instinct," brutish stresses likeness to an animal in low intelligence, in base appetites, and in behavior based on instinct.

brutish stupidity

In what contexts can bestial take the place of brutish?

In some situations, the words bestial and brutish are roughly equivalent. However, bestial suggests a state of degradation unworthy of humans and fit only for beasts.

bestial depravity

When is brutal a more appropriate choice than brutish?

The meanings of brutal and brutish largely overlap; however, brutal applies to people, their acts, or their words and suggests a lack of intelligence, feeling, or humanity.

a senseless and brutal war

When could feral be used to replace brutish?

The words feral and brutish can be used in similar contexts, but feral suggests the savagery or ferocity of wild animals.

the struggle to survive unleashed their feral impulses

Thesaurus Entries Near brutish

Cite this Entry

“Brutish.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

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