Synonyms & Antonyms of busy

(Entry 1 of 2)

2 marked by much life, movement, or activity
  • the busy, often hectic floor of the New York Stock Exchange

Synonyms for busy

Words Related to busy

Antonyms for busy

3 thrusting oneself where one is not welcome or invited
  • she's one of those busy production facilitators—always concerned about other people's work and never her own

Synonyms for busy

Words Related to busy

Near Antonyms for busy

Antonyms for busy



Synonyms & Antonyms of busy (Entry 2 of 2)

to hold the attention of
  • the video game busied the child for hours

Synonyms for busy

Words Related to busy

Phrases Synonymous with busy

Near Antonyms for busy

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Frequently Asked Questions About busy

How is the word busy different from other adjectives like it?

Some common synonyms of busy are assiduous, diligent, industrious, and sedulous. While all these words mean "actively engaged or occupied," busy chiefly stresses activity as opposed to idleness or leisure.

too busy to spend time with the children

When would assiduous be a good substitute for busy?

While in some cases nearly identical to busy, assiduous stresses careful and unremitting application.

assiduous practice

In what contexts can diligent take the place of busy?

The words diligent and busy can be used in similar contexts, but diligent suggests earnest application to some specific object or pursuit.

very diligent in her pursuit of a degree

Where would industrious be a reasonable alternative to busy?

The synonyms industrious and busy are sometimes interchangeable, but industrious implies characteristic or habitual devotion to work.

industrious employees

When could sedulous be used to replace busy?

The words sedulous and busy are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, sedulous implies painstaking and persevering application.

a sedulous investigation of the murder

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Time Traveler for busy

Time Traveler

The first known use of busy was before the 12th century

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Cite this Entry

“Busy.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on busy

Nglish: Translation of busy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of busy for Arabic Speakers


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