Synonyms of event

1 something that happens
  • dinnertime was devoted to talking over the day's events, not to watching television

Synonyms for event

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2 something that might happen
  • in the event of rain, graduation ceremonies will be held indoors

Synonyms for event

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3 a competitive encounter between individuals or groups carried on for amusement, exercise, or in pursuit of a prize
  • figure skating is usually one of the most popular events in the winter Olympics

Synonyms for event

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4 a social gathering
  • the mayor's evenings are often tied up with one event after another

Synonyms for event

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Frequently Asked Questions About event

How is the word event distinct from other similar nouns?

Some common synonyms of event are circumstance, episode, incident, and occurrence. While all these words mean "something that happens or takes place," event usually implies an occurrence of some importance and frequently one having antecedent cause.

the events following the assassination

When can circumstance be used instead of event?

The words circumstance and event are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, circumstance implies a specific detail attending an action or event as part of its setting or background.

couldn't recall the exact circumstances

When would episode be a good substitute for event?

In some situations, the words episode and event are roughly equivalent. However, episode stresses the distinctiveness or apartness of an incident.

a brief romantic episode in a life devoted to work

When is incident a more appropriate choice than event?

While in some cases nearly identical to event, incident suggests an occurrence of brief duration or secondary importance.

a minor wartime incident

When might occurrence be a better fit than event?

Although the words occurrence and event have much in common, occurrence may apply to a happening without intent, volition, or plan.

an encounter that was a chance occurrence

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Time Traveler for event

Time Traveler

The first known use of event was in 1539

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Cite this Entry

“Event.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Apr. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on event

Dictionary: Definition of event

Medical Dictionary: Definition of event

Nglish: Translation of event for Spanish Speakers

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

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