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Synonym Chooser

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

Some common synonyms of lag are dally, dawdle, delay, loiter, and procrastinate. While all these words mean "to move or act slowly so as to fall behind," lag implies failure to maintain a speed set by others.

lagging behind in technology

When might dally be a better fit than lag?

Although the words dally and lag have much in common, dally suggests delay through trifling or vacillation when promptness is necessary.

stop dallying and get to work

When is delay a more appropriate choice than lag?

In some situations, the words delay and lag are roughly equivalent. However, delay usually implies a putting off of something (such as a beginning or departure).

we cannot delay any longer

How do loiter and dawdle relate to one another, in the sense of lag?

Both loiter and dawdle imply delay while in progress, especially in walking, but dawdle more clearly suggests an aimless wasting of time.

loitered at several store windows
children dawdling on their way home from school

In what contexts can procrastinate take the place of lag?

While in some cases nearly identical to lag, procrastinate implies blameworthy delay especially through laziness or apathy.

procrastinates about making decisions

Thesaurus Entries Near lag

Cite this Entry

“Lag.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

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