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Synonym Chooser

How does the verb capture contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of capture are bag, catch, ensnare, entrap, snare, and trap. While all these words mean "to come to possess or control by or as if by seizing," capture suggests taking by overcoming resistance or difficulty.

capture an enemy stronghold

In what contexts can bag take the place of capture?

In some situations, the words bag and capture are roughly equivalent. However, bag implies shooting down a fleeing or distant prey.

bagged a brace of pheasants

When is catch a more appropriate choice than capture?

The words catch and capture are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, catch implies the seizing of something in motion or in flight or in hiding.

caught the dog as it ran by

How do entrap and ensnare relate to one another, in the sense of capture?

Both entrap and ensnare more often are figurative.

entrapped the witness with a trick question
a sting operation that ensnared burglars

How is trap related to other words for capture?

Trap, snare, entrap, and ensnare imply seizing by some device that holds the one caught at the mercy of the captor. Trap and snare apply more commonly to physical seizing.

trap animals
snared butterflies with a net

Thesaurus Entries Near capture

Cite this Entry

“Capture.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on capture

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