Synonyms & Antonyms of care

(Entry 1 of 2)

2 attention accompanied by protectiveness and responsibility
  • that's an extremely valuable violin, so handle it with care

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5 responsibility for the safety and well-being of someone or something
  • while you're under my care, you'll do as you're told

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6 the duty or function of watching or guarding for the sake of proper direction or control
  • you'll have care of the project from its beginning to its completion

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7 the act or activity of looking after and making decisions about something
  • she stepped up and took over the care of the bank after her father retired

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Synonyms & Antonyms of care (Entry 2 of 2)

to have an interest or concern for
  • a teacher who cares what happens to her students long after they leave her classroom

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See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About care

How is the word care distinct from other similar nouns?

Some common synonyms of care are anxiety, concern, solicitude, and worry. While all these words mean "a troubled or engrossed state of mind or the thing that causes this," care implies oppression of the mind weighed down by responsibility or disquieted by apprehension.

a face worn by years of care

When can anxiety be used instead of care?

The meanings of anxiety and care largely overlap; however, anxiety stresses anguished uncertainty or fear of misfortune or failure.

plagued by anxiety and self-doubt

When might concern be a better fit than care?

While in some cases nearly identical to care, concern implies a troubled state of mind because of personal interest, relation, or affection.

crimes caused concern in the neighborhood

When would solicitude be a good substitute for care?

Although the words solicitude and care have much in common, solicitude implies great concern and connotes either thoughtful or hovering attentiveness toward another.

acted with typical maternal solicitude

Where would worry be a reasonable alternative to care?

The words worry and care are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, worry suggests fretting over matters that may or may not be real cause for anxiety.

financial worries

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Time Traveler for care

Time Traveler

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

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Thesaurus Entries Near care

card tables


care and feeding

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Cite this Entry

“Care.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on care

Nglish: Translation of care for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of care for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about care


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