Thesaurus

leaning

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of leaning

(Entry 1 of 3)

running in a slanting direction
  • the leaning tower of Pisa is a popular tourist attraction in Italy

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leaning

noun

Synonyms & Antonyms of leaning (Entry 2 of 3)

1 a prevailing or general movement or inclination
  • the news media are often accused of having liberal leanings

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leaning

verb
present participle of lean

Synonyms & Antonyms of leaning (Entry 3 of 3)

1 to set or cause to be at an angle
  • just lean the ladder against the tree and climb up it

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2 to show a liking or proneness (for something)
  • the family's diet leans toward greasy food

Synonyms for leaning

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3 to place reliance or trust
  • you can always lean on me if you need help

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Frequently Asked Questions About leaning

How does the noun leaning contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of leaning are penchant, proclivity, and propensity. While all these words mean "a strong instinct or liking for something," leaning suggests a liking or attraction not strong enough to be decisive or uncontrollable.

a student with artistic leanings

When might penchant be a better fit than leaning?

In some situations, the words penchant and leaning are roughly equivalent. However, penchant implies a strongly marked taste in the person or an irresistible attraction in the object.

a penchant for taking risks

When is proclivity a more appropriate choice than leaning?

The words proclivity and leaning can be used in similar contexts, but proclivity suggests a strong natural proneness usually to something objectionable or evil.

a proclivity for violence

In what contexts can propensity take the place of leaning?

The meanings of propensity and leaning largely overlap; however, propensity implies a deeply ingrained and usually irresistible inclination.

a propensity to offer advice

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Time Traveler for leaning

Time Traveler

The first known use of leaning was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Leaning.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/leaning. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on leaning

Dictionary: Definition of leaning

Nglish: Translation of leaning for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of leaning for Arabic Speakers

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