Synonyms & Antonyms of mercy

2 an act of kind assistance
  • did a mercy for the stranded motorist and was richly rewarded

Synonyms for mercy

Words Related to mercy

Near Antonyms for mercy

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About mercy

How does the noun mercy differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of mercy are charity, clemency, grace, and leniency. While all these words mean "a disposition to show kindness or compassion," mercy implies compassion that forbears punishing even when justice demands it.

threw himself on the mercy of the court

When would charity be a good substitute for mercy?

While the synonyms charity and mercy are close in meaning, charity stresses benevolence and goodwill shown in broad understanding and tolerance of others.

show a little charity for the less fortunate

When can clemency be used instead of mercy?

The words clemency and mercy are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, clemency implies a mild or merciful disposition in one having the power or duty of punishing.

the judge refused to show clemency

When is it sensible to use grace instead of mercy?

The synonyms grace and mercy are sometimes interchangeable, but grace implies a benign attitude and a willingness to grant favors or make concessions.

by the grace of God

When is leniency a more appropriate choice than mercy?

The words leniency and mercy can be used in similar contexts, but leniency implies lack of severity in punishing.

criticized the courts for excessive leniency

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About mercy

Time Traveler for mercy

Time Traveler

The first known use of mercy was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Thesaurus Entries Near mercy



mercy killing

See More Nearby Entries 

Cite this Entry

“Mercy.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on mercy

Nglish: Translation of mercy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of mercy for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Dog Words Quiz

  • shiba puppy more or less demanding cuddles
  • Which of the following animals has a dog in its etymology?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!