Thesaurus

crisis

noun

Synonyms of crisis

a time or state of affairs requiring prompt or decisive action
  • the governor responded swiftly and surely to the crisis

Synonyms for crisis

Words Related to crisis

Phrases Synonymous with crisis

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About crisis

How does the noun crisis differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of crisis are contingency, emergency, exigency, juncture, pinch, straits, and strait. While all these words mean "a critical or crucial time or state of affairs," crisis applies to a juncture whose outcome will make a decisive difference.

a crisis of confidence

Where would contingency be a reasonable alternative to crisis?

The words contingency and crisis are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, contingency implies an emergency or exigency that is regarded as possible but uncertain of occurrence.

contingency plans

When would emergency be a good substitute for crisis?

The meanings of emergency and crisis largely overlap; however, emergency applies to a sudden unforeseen situation requiring prompt action to avoid disaster.

the presence of mind needed to deal with emergencies

When is it sensible to use exigency instead of crisis?

In some situations, the words exigency and crisis are roughly equivalent. However, exigency stresses the pressure of restrictions or urgency of demands created by a special situation.

provide for exigencies

When is juncture a more appropriate choice than crisis?

Although the words juncture and crisis have much in common, juncture stresses the significant concurrence or convergence of events.

an important juncture in our country's history

How does the word pinch relate to other synonyms for crisis?

Pinch implies urgency or pressure for action to a less intense degree than exigency or emergency.

come through in a pinch

How are the words strait and straits related as synonyms of crisis?

Strait, now commonly straits, applies to a troublesome situation from which escape is extremely difficult.

in dire straits

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about crisis

Time Traveler for crisis

Time Traveler

The first known use of crisis was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Cite this Entry

“Crisis.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/crisis. Accessed 26 Feb. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on crisis

Dictionary: Definition of crisis

Medical Dictionary: Definition of crisis

Nglish: Translation of crisis for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crisis for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about crisis

Comments on crisis

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

February 2021 Words of the Day Quiz

  • squirrel in winter
  • Which is a synonym of perdure?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

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!