Synonym Chooser

How does the verb mislead differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of mislead are beguile, deceive, and delude. While all these words mean "to lead astray or frustrate usually by underhandedness," mislead implies a leading astray that may or may not be intentional.

I was misled by the confusing sign

When might beguile be a better fit than mislead?

In some situations, the words beguile and mislead are roughly equivalent. However, beguile stresses the use of charm and persuasion in deceiving.

was beguiled by false promises

When could deceive be used to replace mislead?

While in some cases nearly identical to mislead, deceive implies imposing a false idea or belief that causes ignorance, bewilderment, or helplessness.

tried to deceive me about the cost

In what contexts can delude take the place of mislead?

While the synonyms delude and mislead are close in meaning, delude implies deceiving so thoroughly as to obscure the truth.

we were deluded into thinking we were safe

Thesaurus Entries Near mislead

Cite this Entry

“Mislead.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jul. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on mislead

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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