Synonyms & Antonyms of plumb

(Entry 1 of 3)

2 rising straight up
  • the wall was not plumb, so everything else in the room was out of kilter

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Synonyms & Antonyms of plumb (Entry 2 of 3)

1 in a direct line or course
  • I can't believe he walked plumb into the tree, without even seeing it!

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Synonyms of plumb (Entry 3 of 3)

to measure the depth of (as a body of water) typically with a weighted line
  • plumbed the bay to make sure it was deep enough for the ship

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Frequently Asked Questions About plumb

How does the adjective plumb differ from other similar words?

The words perpendicular and vertical are common synonyms of plumb. While all three words mean "being at right angles to a base line," plumb stresses an exact verticality determined (as with a plumb line) by earth's gravity.

make sure that the wall is plumb

When might perpendicular be a better fit than plumb?

Although the words perpendicular and plumb have much in common, perpendicular may stress the straightness of a line making a right angle with any other line, not necessarily a horizontal one.

the parallel bars are perpendicular to the support posts

In what contexts can vertical take the place of plumb?

In some situations, the words vertical and plumb are roughly equivalent. However, vertical suggests a line or direction rising straight upward toward a zenith.

the side of the cliff is almost vertical

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Time Traveler for plumb

Time Traveler

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

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Cite this Entry

“Plumb.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on plumb

Nglish: Translation of plumb for Spanish Speakers


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