Synonym Chooser

How does the adjective doubtful contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of doubtful are dubious, problematic, and questionable. While all these words mean "not affording assurance of the worth, soundness, or certainty of something," doubtful implies little more than a lack of conviction or certainty.

doubtful about whether I said the right thing

When is dubious a more appropriate choice than doubtful?

The words dubious and doubtful are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, dubious stresses suspicion, mistrust, or hesitation.

dubious about the practicality of the scheme

When is it sensible to use problematic instead of doubtful?

While the synonyms problematic and doubtful are close in meaning, problematic applies especially to things whose existence, meaning, fulfillment, or realization is highly uncertain.

whether the project will ever be finished is problematic

When would questionable be a good substitute for doubtful?

While in some cases nearly identical to doubtful, questionable may imply no more than the existence of doubt but usually suggests that the suspicions are well-grounded.

a man of questionable honesty

Thesaurus Entries Near doubtful

Cite this Entry

“Doubtful.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Jun. 2023.

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