Synonyms & Antonyms of desire

(Entry 1 of 2)

2 sexual appetite
  • ads for drugs that increase desire

Synonyms for desire

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Near Antonyms for desire

3 an earnest request
  • at the delegate's desire, the voice vote on the controversial measure was followed by an actual roll call

Synonyms for desire

Words Related to desire



Synonyms & Antonyms of desire (Entry 2 of 2)

1 to have an earnest wish to own or enjoy
  • he greatly desired a new mountain bike for his next birthday

Synonyms for desire

Words Related to desire

Phrases Synonymous with desire

Near Antonyms for desire

2 to make a request for
  • the host desires a response to the dinner invitation by tomorrow

Synonyms for desire

Words Related to desire

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Frequently Asked Questions About desire

How does the verb desire differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of desire are covet, crave, want, and wish. While all these words mean "to have a longing for," desire stresses the strength of feeling and often implies strong intention or aim.

desires to start a new life

Where would covet be a reasonable alternative to desire?

While the synonyms covet and desire are close in meaning, covet implies strong envious desire.

covets his rise to fame

When might crave be a better fit than desire?

In some situations, the words crave and desire are roughly equivalent. However, crave stresses the force of physical appetite or emotional need.

craves sweets

When could want be used to replace desire?

The synonyms want and desire are sometimes interchangeable, but want specifically suggests a felt need or lack.

wants to have a family

When is it sensible to use wish instead of desire?

The meanings of wish and desire largely overlap; however, wish sometimes implies a general or transient longing especially for the unattainable.

wishes for permanent world peace

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Time Traveler for desire

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The first known use of desire was in the 13th century

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Cite this Entry

“Desire.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Sep. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on desire

Nglish: Translation of desire for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of desire for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about desire


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