Synonym Chooser

How does the noun illusion contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of illusion are delusion, hallucination, and mirage. While all these words mean "something that is believed to be true or real but that is actually false or unreal," illusion implies a false ascribing of reality based on what one sees or imagines.

an illusion of safety

When is delusion a more appropriate choice than illusion?

While the synonyms delusion and illusion are close in meaning, delusion implies an inability to distinguish between what is real and what only seems to be real, often as the result of a disordered state of mind.

delusions of persecution

When could hallucination be used to replace illusion?

In some situations, the words hallucination and illusion are roughly equivalent. However, hallucination implies impressions that are the product of disordered senses, as because of mental illness or drugs.

suffered from terrifying hallucinations

When might mirage be a better fit than illusion?

The words mirage and illusion are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, mirage in its extended sense applies to an illusory vision, dream, hope, or aim.

claimed a balanced budget is a mirage

Thesaurus Entries Near illusion

Cite this Entry

“Illusion.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/illusion. Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

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