Synonyms & Antonyms of fierce

4 having or showing a bold forcefulness in the pursuit of a goal
  • a social reformer of fierce and fearless determination

Synonyms for fierce

Words Related to fierce

Near Antonyms for fierce

Antonyms for fierce

6 marked by great and often stressful excitement or activity
  • fierce early-morning trading sent stocks soaring

Synonyms for fierce

Words Related to fierce

Near Antonyms for fierce

Antonyms for fierce

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Frequently Asked Questions About fierce

How is the word fierce different from other adjectives like it?

Some common synonyms of fierce are barbarous, cruel, ferocious, and savage. While all these words mean "showing fury or malignity in looks or actions," fierce applies to humans and animals that inspire terror because of their wild and menacing aspect or fury in attack.

fierce warriors

Where would barbarous be a reasonable alternative to fierce?

While in some cases nearly identical to fierce, barbarous implies a ferocity or mercilessness regarded as unworthy of civilized people.

barbarous treatment of prisoners

When is it sensible to use cruel instead of fierce?

The meanings of cruel and fierce largely overlap; however, cruel implies indifference to suffering and even positive pleasure in inflicting it.

the cruel jokes of schoolboys

When would ferocious be a good substitute for fierce?

The synonyms ferocious and fierce are sometimes interchangeable, but ferocious implies extreme fierceness and unrestrained violence and brutality.

a ferocious dog

When can savage be used instead of fierce?

Although the words savage and fierce have much in common, savage implies the absence of inhibitions restraining civilized people filled with rage, lust, or other violent passion.

a savage criminal

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Time Traveler for fierce

Time Traveler

The first known use of fierce was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Fierce.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jun. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on fierce

Nglish: Translation of fierce for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fierce for Arabic Speakers


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