Thesaurus

fragile

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of fragile

1 easily broken
  • attaching the beautiful but fragile ornaments to the Christmas tree is always a touchy operation

Synonyms for fragile

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2 easily injured without careful handling
  • babies are fragile, so remember to care for them gently

Synonyms for fragile

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Antonyms for fragile

3 small in degree
  • a fragile possibility that we might emerge from this fiasco unscathed

Synonyms for fragile

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Antonyms for fragile

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Frequently Asked Questions About fragile

How does the adjective fragile contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of fragile are brittle, crisp, frangible, and friable. While all these words mean "breaking easily," fragile implies extreme delicacy of material or construction and need for careful handling.

a fragile antique chair

In what contexts can brittle take the place of fragile?

The words brittle and fragile are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, brittle implies hardness together with lack of elasticity or flexibility or toughness.

brittle bones

When is it sensible to use crisp instead of fragile?

Although the words crisp and fragile have much in common, crisp implies a firmness and brittleness desirable especially in some foods.

crisp lettuce

Where would frangible be a reasonable alternative to fragile?

The words frangible and fragile can be used in similar contexts, but frangible implies susceptibility to being broken without implying weakness or delicacy.

frangible stone used for paving

When would friable be a good substitute for fragile?

While in some cases nearly identical to fragile, friable applies to substances that are easily crumbled or pulverized.

friable soil

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Time Traveler for fragile

Time Traveler

The first known use of fragile was in 1521

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Cite this Entry

“Fragile.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/fragile. Accessed 21 Sep. 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on fragile

Dictionary: Definition of fragile

Nglish: Translation of fragile for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fragile for Arabic Speakers

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