Synonym Chooser

How does the verb distort contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of distort are contort, deform, and warp. While all these words mean "to mar or spoil by or as if by twisting," distort and contort both imply a wrenching from the natural or normal, but contort suggests a more involved twisting and a more grotesque and painful result.

the odd camera angle distorts the figure
disease had contorted her body

In what contexts can deform take the place of distort?

Although the words deform and distort have much in common, deform may imply a change of shape through stress, injury, or accident of growth.

a face deformed by hatred

When is it sensible to use warp instead of distort?

In some situations, the words warp and distort are roughly equivalent. However, warp indicates an uneven shrinking that bends or twists out of a flat plane.

warped floorboards

Thesaurus Entries Near distort

Cite this Entry

“Distort.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/distort. Accessed 3 Dec. 2023.

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