Synonym Chooser

How is the word fruitful distinct from other similar adjectives?

Some common synonyms of fruitful are fecund, fertile, and prolific. While all these words mean "producing or capable of producing offspring or fruit," fruitful adds to fertile and fecund the implication of desirable or useful results.

fruitful research

When is fecund a more appropriate choice than fruitful?

The words fecund and fruitful can be used in similar contexts, but fecund emphasizes abundance or rapidity in bearing fruit or offspring.

a fecund herd

In what contexts can fertile take the place of fruitful?

In some situations, the words fertile and fruitful are roughly equivalent. However, fertile implies the power to reproduce in kind or to assist in reproduction and growth; applied figuratively, it suggests readiness of invention and development.

fertile soil
a fertile imagination

When would prolific be a good substitute for fruitful?

The meanings of prolific and fruitful largely overlap; however, prolific stresses rapidity of spreading or multiplying by or as if by natural reproduction.

a prolific writer

Thesaurus Entries Near fruitful

Cite this Entry

“Fruitful.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Jun. 2023.

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