Synonym Chooser

How is the word inaugurate different from other verbs like it?

Some common synonyms of inaugurate are begin, commence, initiate, start, and usher in. While all these words mean "to take the first step in a course, process, or operation," inaugurate suggests a beginning of some formality or notion of significance.

the discovery of penicillin inaugurated a new era in medicine

How does the word begin relate to other synonyms for inaugurate?

Begin, start, and commence are often interchangeable, with begin, opposed to end, being the most general.

begin a trip
began dancing

How is commence related to other words for inaugurate?

Commence can be more formal or bookish than begin or start.

commence firing
commenced a conversation

When is it sensible to use initiate instead of inaugurate?

The words initiate and inaugurate are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, initiate implies taking a first step in a process or series that is to continue.

initiated diplomatic contacts

Where would start be a reasonable alternative to inaugurate?

In some situations, the words start and inaugurate are roughly equivalent. However, start, opposed to stop, applies especially to first actions, steps, or stages.

the work started slowly

How do usher in and inaugurate relate to one another?

Usher in is somewhat less weighty than inaugurate.

ushered in a period of economic decline

Thesaurus Entries Near inaugurate

Cite this Entry

“Inaugurate.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

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