Synonyms & Antonyms of confound

1 to throw into a state of mental uncertainty
  • we were confounded by the player's remote control, which wasn't at all user-friendly

Synonyms for confound

Words Related to confound

Phrases Synonymous with confound

Near Antonyms for confound

2 to throw into a state of self-conscious distress
  • his renewed popularity has confounded the critics who said his singing career was dead

Synonyms for confound

Words Related to confound

Near Antonyms for confound

3 to fail to differentiate (a thing) from something similar or related
  • I think you've confounded astrology with astronomy

Synonyms for confound

Words Related to confound

Antonyms for confound

4 to prove to be false
  • new discoveries that confound much of what archaeologists thought they knew about the Mayan civilization

Synonyms for confound

Words Related to confound

Phrases Synonymous with confound

Near Antonyms for confound

Antonyms for confound

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About confound

How does the verb confound differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of confound are bewilder, distract, dumbfound, nonplus, perplex, and puzzle. While all these words mean "to baffle and disturb mentally," confound implies temporary mental paralysis caused by astonishment or profound abasement.

the tragic news confounded us all

When might bewilder be a better fit than confound?

In some situations, the words bewilder and confound are roughly equivalent. However, bewilder stresses a confusion of mind that hampers clear and decisive thinking.

a bewildering number of possibilities

Where would distract be a reasonable alternative to confound?

While the synonyms distract and confound are close in meaning, distract implies agitation or uncertainty induced by conflicting preoccupations or interests.

distracted by personal problems

When can dumbfound be used instead of confound?

The words dumbfound and confound are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, dumbfound suggests intense but momentary confounding; often the idea of astonishment is so stressed that it becomes a near synonym of astound.

was at first too dumbfounded to reply

When could nonplus be used to replace confound?

The synonyms nonplus and confound are sometimes interchangeable, but nonplus implies a bafflement that makes orderly planning or deciding impossible.

the remark left us utterly nonplussed

In what contexts can perplex take the place of confound?

The meanings of perplex and confound largely overlap; however, perplex adds a suggestion of worry and uncertainty especially about making a necessary decision.

a behavior that perplexed her friends

When would puzzle be a good substitute for confound?

The words puzzle and confound can be used in similar contexts, but puzzle implies existence of a problem difficult to solve.

the persistent fever puzzled the doctor

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about confound

Time Traveler for confound

Time Traveler

The first known use of confound was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Cite this Entry

“Confound.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on confound

Dictionary: Definition of confound

Spanish Central: Translation of confound

Nglish: Translation of confound for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of confound for Arabic Speakers

Comments on confound

What made you want to look up confound? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Thing: Animal Edition

  • alt 5a023732e6f75
  • Name that animal:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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