Synonym Chooser

How does the noun misery differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of misery are agony, distress, and suffering. While all these words mean "the state of being in great trouble," misery stresses the unhappiness attending especially sickness, poverty, or loss.

the homeless live with misery every day

When could agony be used to replace misery?

The synonyms agony and misery are sometimes interchangeable, but agony suggests pain too intense to be borne.

in agony over the death of their child

When is it sensible to use distress instead of misery?

The meanings of distress and misery largely overlap; however, distress implies an external and usually temporary cause of great physical or mental strain and stress.

the hurricane put everyone in great distress

When is suffering a more appropriate choice than misery?

The words suffering and misery are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, suffering implies conscious endurance of pain or distress.

the suffering of famine victims

Thesaurus Entries Near misery

Cite this Entry

“Misery.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/misery. Accessed 3 Mar. 2024.

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