Synonym Chooser

How does the verb gainsay differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of gainsay are contradict, contravene, and deny. While all these words mean "to refuse to accept as true or valid," gainsay implies disputing the truth of what another has said.

no one can gainsay her claims

When is contradict a more appropriate choice than gainsay?

The synonyms contradict and gainsay are sometimes interchangeable, but contradict implies an open or flat denial.

her account contradicts his

When might contravene be a better fit than gainsay?

While the synonyms contravene and gainsay are close in meaning, contravene implies not so much an intentional opposition as some inherent incompatibility.

laws that contravene tradition

When would deny be a good substitute for gainsay?

In some situations, the words deny and gainsay are roughly equivalent. However, deny implies a firm refusal to accept as true, to grant or concede, or to acknowledge the existence or claims of.

denied the charges


Thesaurus Entries Near gainsay

Cite this Entry

“Gainsay.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Mar. 2023.

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