Synonym Chooser

How is the word chastise distinct from other similar verbs?

Some common synonyms of chastise are castigate, chasten, correct, discipline, and punish. While all these words mean "to inflict a penalty on in requital for wrongdoing," chastise may apply to either the infliction of corporal punishment or to verbal censure or denunciation.

chastised his son for neglecting his studies

When could castigate be used to replace chastise?

In some situations, the words castigate and chastise are roughly equivalent. However, castigate usually implies a severe, typically public censure.

an editorial castigating the entire city council

When can chasten be used instead of chastise?

While the synonyms chasten and chastise are close in meaning, chasten suggests any affliction or trial that leaves one humbled or subdued.

chastened by a landslide election defeat

When might correct be a better fit than chastise?

While in some cases nearly identical to chastise, correct implies punishing aimed at reforming an offender.

the function of prison is to correct the wrongdoer

When is discipline a more appropriate choice than chastise?

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

parents must discipline their children

In what contexts can punish take the place of chastise?

The words punish and chastise are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, punish implies subjecting to a penalty for wrongdoing.

punished for stealing

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Cite this Entry

“Chastise.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/chastise. Accessed 22 May. 2024.

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