Thesaurus

pretentious

adjective

Synonyms and Antonyms of pretentious

  1. 1 self-consciously trying to present an appearance of grandeur or importance that pretentious couple always serves caviar at their parties, even though they themselves dislike it Synonyms of pretentious affected, grandiose, highfalutin (also hifalutin), high-minded, la-di-da (also la-de-da or lah-de-dah or lah-dee-dah or lah-di-dah), ostentatious, pompous, snippy Words Related to pretentious airy, grandiloquent, high-flown, high-sounding, high-toned, sententious; arrogant, bumptious, complacent, conceited, egoistic (also egoistical), egotistic (or egotistical), high-and-mighty, high-handed, high-hat, hoity-toity, imperious, important, overweening, presumptuous, prideful, proud, self-asserting, self-assertive, self-centered, self-complacent, self-conceited, self-important, self-obsessed, self-pleased, self-satisfied, smug, uppity, vain, vainglorious; self-aggrandizing, self-dramatizing, self-glorifying, self-promoting; cavalier, disdainful, haughty, lordly, snobbish, snobby, stuck-up, supercilious, superior; confident, self-assured, self-confident, sure; boastful, braggart, bragging; aggressive, assertive, audacious, bold, brassy, cheeky, cocky, forward, impudent, insolent, rude; flamboyant, flashy, flaunting, garish, gaudy, glitzy, showy, splashy Near Antonyms of pretentious demure, down-to-earth, homely, humble, lowly, meek, retiring, unassertive, unassuming; bashful, diffident, mousy (or mousey), overmodest, passive, quiet, reserved, shy, timid Antonyms of pretentious modest, unpretentious

  2. 2 having a feeling of superiority that shows itself in an overbearing attitude a pretentious author whose books only appeal to equally pretentious readers Synonyms of pretentious assumptive, bumptious, cavalier, chesty, haughty, highfalutin (also hifalutin), high-and-mighty, high-handed, high-hat, huffish, huffy, imperious, important, lofty, lordly, masterful, overweening, peremptory, pompous, presuming, presumptuous, arrogant, self-asserting, self-assertive, sniffy, stiff-necked, supercilious, superior, toplofty (also toploftical), uppish, uppityWords Related to pretentious authoritarian, bossy, dominant, dominating, domineering, magisterial, pontifical, pontificating; condescending, disdainful, patronizing; impertinent, impudent, saucy; snobbish, snobby, snooty; blusterous, blustery, boastful, bombastic, braggart, bragging, braggy, cocky, swaggering, vain, vainglorious; complacent, conceited, egocentric, egoistic (also egoistical), egotistic (or egotistical), hubristic, narcissistic, orgulous, prideful, proud, self-affected, self-applauding, self-centered, self-complacent, self-conceited, self-pleased, self-satisfied, smug, stuck-up; self-flattering, self-loving, self-promoting; brash, forward, uninhibited, unreserved; extroverted (also extraverted), immodestNear Antonyms of pretentious bashful, cowering, cringing, demure, diffident, introverted, mousy (or mousey), overmodest, self-critical, self-doubting, sheepish, shrinking, shy, subdued, timid; acquiescent, compliant, deferential, meek, passive, submissive, unaggressive, unassertive, unassuming, unobtrusive, yielding; quiet, reserved, retiringAntonyms of pretentious humble, lowly, modest, unarrogant, unpretentious

Synonym Discussion of pretentious

showy, pretentious, ostentatious mean given to excessive outward display. showy implies an imposing or striking appearance but usually suggests cheapness or poor taste.
    • the performers' showy costumes
pretentious implies an appearance of importance not justified by the thing's value or the person's standing.
    • a pretentious parade of hard words
ostentatious stresses vainglorious display or parade.
    • the ostentatious summer homes of the rich


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up pretentious? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to provide what is needed to exist

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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