Synonym Chooser

How is the word fraud different from other nouns like it?

Some common synonyms of fraud are counterfeit, fake, humbug, imposture, and sham. While all these words mean "a thing made to seem other than it is," fraud usually implies a deliberate perversion of the truth.

the diary was exposed as a fraud

When could counterfeit be used to replace fraud?

The words counterfeit and fraud can be used in similar contexts, but counterfeit applies especially to the close imitation of something valuable.

20-dollar bills that were counterfeits

When can fake be used instead of fraud?

The words fake and fraud are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, fake implies an imitation of or substitution for the genuine but does not necessarily imply dishonesty.

these jewels are fakes; the real ones are in the vault

When would humbug be a good substitute for fraud?

The meanings of humbug and fraud largely overlap; however, humbug suggests elaborate pretense usually so flagrant as to be transparent.

creating publicity by foisting humbugs on a gullible public

When might imposture be a better fit than fraud?

While in some cases nearly identical to fraud, imposture applies to any situation in which a spurious object or performance is passed off as genuine.

their claim of environmental concern is an imposture

In what contexts can sham take the place of fraud?

Although the words sham and fraud have much in common, sham applies to fraudulent imitation of a real thing or action.

condemned the election as a sham

Thesaurus Entries Near fraud

Cite this Entry

“Fraud.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on fraud

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