Synonyms & Antonyms of perturb

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Frequently Asked Questions About perturb

How does the verb perturb contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of perturb are agitate, discompose, disquiet, disturb, fluster, and upset. While all these words mean "to destroy capacity for collected thought or decisive action," perturb implies deep disturbance of mind and emotions.

perturbed by her husband's strange behavior

In what contexts can agitate take the place of perturb?

Although the words agitate and perturb have much in common, agitate suggests obvious external signs of nervous or emotional excitement.

in his agitated state we could see he was unable to work

When would discompose be a good substitute for perturb?

While the synonyms discompose and perturb are close in meaning, discompose implies some degree of loss of self-control or self-confidence especially through emotional stress.

discomposed by the loss of his beloved wife

When is disquiet a more appropriate choice than perturb?

While in some cases nearly identical to perturb, disquiet suggests loss of sense of security or peace of mind.

the disquieting news of factories closing

When can disturb be used instead of perturb?

In some situations, the words disturb and perturb are roughly equivalent. However, disturb implies interference with one's mental processes caused by worry, perplexity, or interruption.

the discrepancy in accounts disturbed me

Where would fluster be a reasonable alternative to perturb?

The words fluster and perturb can be used in similar contexts, but fluster suggests bewildered agitation.

his declaration of love completely flustered her

When might upset be a better fit than perturb?

The meanings of upset and perturb largely overlap; however, upset implies the disturbance of normal or habitual functioning by disappointment, distress, or grief.

the family's constant bickering upsets the youngest child

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Time Traveler for perturb

Time Traveler

The first known use of perturb was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Perturb.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Dec. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on perturb

Nglish: Translation of perturb for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of perturb for Arabic Speakers


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