Synonym Chooser

How does the adjective circumspect contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of circumspect are cautious, chary, and wary. While all these words mean "prudently watchful and discreet in the face of danger or risk," circumspect suggests less fear and stresses the surveying of all possible consequences before acting or deciding.

circumspect in his business dealings

When could cautious be used to replace circumspect?

The words cautious and circumspect can be used in similar contexts, but cautious implies the exercise of forethought usually prompted by fear of danger.

a cautious driver

When is chary a more appropriate choice than circumspect?

While the synonyms chary and circumspect are close in meaning, chary implies a cautious reluctance to give, act, or speak freely.

chary of signing papers without having read them first

In what contexts can wary take the place of circumspect?

The words wary and circumspect are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, wary emphasizes suspiciousness and alertness in watching for danger and cunning in escaping it.

keeps a wary eye on the competition

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Cite this Entry

“Circumspect.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/circumspect. Accessed 15 Jul. 2024.

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