Thesaurus

castigate

verb

Synonyms & Antonyms of castigate

1 to criticize (someone) severely or angrily especially for personal failings
  • castigated him for his constant tardiness

Synonyms for castigate

Words Related to castigate

Phrases Synonymous with castigate

Near Antonyms for castigate

2 to criticize harshly and usually publicly
  • a newspaper editorial castigating the city council for approving the project in the first place

Synonyms for castigate

Words Related to castigate

Phrases Synonymous with castigate

Near Antonyms for castigate

3 to inflict a penalty on for a fault or crime
  • a judge who believes in castigating criminals to the full extent of the law

Synonyms for castigate

Words Related to castigate

Near Antonyms for castigate

Antonyms for castigate

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About castigate

How is the word castigate distinct from other similar verbs?

Some common synonyms of castigate are chasten, chastise, correct, discipline, and punish. While all these words mean "to inflict a penalty on in requital for wrongdoing," castigate usually implies a severe, typically public censure.

an editorial castigating the entire city council

When is chasten a more appropriate choice than castigate?

The words chasten and castigate are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, chasten suggests any affliction or trial that leaves one humbled or subdued.

chastened by a landslide election defeat

When is it sensible to use chastise instead of castigate?

While in some cases nearly identical to castigate, chastise may apply to either the infliction of corporal punishment or to verbal censure or denunciation.

chastised his son for neglecting his studies

In what contexts can correct take the place of castigate?

The meanings of correct and castigate largely overlap; however, correct implies punishing aimed at reforming an offender.

the function of prison is to correct the wrongdoer

Where would discipline be a reasonable alternative to castigate?

Although the words discipline and castigate have much in common, discipline implies a punishing or chastening in order to bring under control.

parents must discipline their children

When might punish be a better fit than castigate?

The synonyms punish and castigate are sometimes interchangeable, but punish implies subjecting to a penalty for wrongdoing.

punished for stealing

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About castigate

Time Traveler for castigate

Time Traveler

The first known use of castigate was in 1606

See more words from the same year

Listen to Our Podcast About castigate

Thesaurus Entries Near castigate

castes

castigate

castigated

See More Nearby Entries 

Cite this Entry

“Castigate.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/castigate. Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on castigate

Nglish: Translation of castigate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of castigate for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!