Synonym Chooser

How does the adjective fateful differ from other similar words?

The words ominous and portentous are common synonyms of fateful. While all three words mean "having a menacing or threatening aspect," fateful suggests being of momentous or decisive importance.

the fateful conference that led to war

Where would ominous be a reasonable alternative to fateful?

Although the words ominous and fateful have much in common, ominous implies having a menacing, alarming character foreshadowing evil or disaster.

ominous rumblings from the volcano

When is it sensible to use portentous instead of fateful?

While the synonyms portentous and fateful are close in meaning, portentous suggests being frighteningly big or impressive but now seldom definitely connotes forewarning of calamity.

an eerie and portentous stillness

Thesaurus Entries Near fateful

Cite this Entry

“Fateful.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/fateful. Accessed 22 Mar. 2023.

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