Synonyms & Antonyms of lift

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 to move from a lower to a higher place or position
  • I needed help lifting the heavy globe back up to the top shelf

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2 to move or extend upward
  • once the sun started to cut through the morning fog, the colorful hot-air balloons began to lift off from the field

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3 to take (something) without right and with an intent to keep
  • she turned her back for just a moment, and somebody lifted her purse

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Synonyms & Antonyms of lift (Entry 2 of 2)

2 a means of getting to a destination in a vehicle driven by another
  • I'll need a lift to work while my car is in the shop

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Frequently Asked Questions About lift

How does the verb lift contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of lift are boost, elevate, heave, hoist, raise, and rear. While all these words mean "to move from a lower to a higher place or position," lift usually implies exerting effort to overcome resistance of weight.

lift the chair while I vacuum

When is boost a more appropriate choice than lift?

The words boost and lift can be used in similar contexts, but boost suggests assisting to climb or advance by a push.

boosted his brother over the fence

How does the word elevate relate to other synonyms for lift?

Elevate may replace lift or raise especially when exalting or enhancing is implied.

elevated the taste of the public

When would heave be a good substitute for lift?

Although the words heave and lift have much in common, heave implies lifting and throwing with great effort or strain.

heaved the heavy crate inside

When is it sensible to use hoist instead of lift?

The meanings of hoist and lift largely overlap; however, hoist implies lifting something heavy especially by mechanical means.

hoisted the cargo on board

In what contexts can raise take the place of lift?

While in some cases nearly identical to lift, raise carries a stronger implication of bringing up to the vertical or to a high position.

scouts raising a flagpole

How are the words rear and raise related as synonyms of lift?

Rear may add an element of suddenness to raise.

suddenly reared itself up on its hind legs

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Time Traveler for lift

Time Traveler

The first known use of lift was before the 12th century

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Cite this Entry

“Lift.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on lift

Nglish: Translation of lift for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lift for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about lift


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