prodigal 1 of 2


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as in spendthrift
someone who spends money freely or foolishly the million-dollar lottery winner was such a prodigal that his windfall was exhausted after only a few years

Synonyms & Similar Words

Antonyms & Near Antonyms

Synonym Chooser

How is the word prodigal distinct from other similar adjectives?

Some common synonyms of prodigal are exuberant, lavish, lush, luxuriant, and profuse. While all these words mean "giving or given out in great abundance," prodigal implies reckless or wasteful lavishness threatening to lead to early exhaustion of resources.

prodigal spending

When might exuberant be a better fit than prodigal?

The words exuberant and prodigal can be used in similar contexts, but exuberant implies marked vitality or vigor in what produces abundantly.

an exuberant imagination

When could lavish be used to replace prodigal?

The synonyms lavish and prodigal are sometimes interchangeable, but lavish suggests an unstinted or unmeasured profusion.

a lavish party

In what contexts can lush take the place of prodigal?

The meanings of lush and prodigal largely overlap; however, lush suggests rich, soft luxuriance.

a lush green lawn

When would luxuriant be a good substitute for prodigal?

In some situations, the words luxuriant and prodigal are roughly equivalent. However, luxuriant suggests a rich and splendid abundance.

a luxuriant beard

When can profuse be used instead of prodigal?

Although the words profuse and prodigal have much in common, profuse implies pouring forth without restraint.

profuse apologies

Thesaurus Entries Near prodigal

Cite this Entry

“Prodigal.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jul. 2024.

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