Thesaurus

sneer

verb

Synonyms of sneer

(Entry 1 of 2)

to express scornful amusement by means of facial contortions
  • they brushed off his sneer and went about their business

Synonyms for sneer

Words Related to sneer

sneer

noun

Synonyms & Antonyms of sneer (Entry 2 of 2)

as in smirk, snicker

Synonyms & Near Synonyms for sneer

Antonyms & Near Antonyms for sneer

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Frequently Asked Questions About sneer

How is the word sneer distinct from other similar verbs?

Some common synonyms of sneer are fleer, flout, gibe, jeer, and scoff. While all these words mean "to show one's contempt in derision or mockery," sneer stresses insulting by contemptuous facial expression, phrasing, or tone of voice.

sneered at anything romantic

When is it sensible to use fleer instead of sneer?

The meanings of fleer and sneer largely overlap; however, fleer suggests grinning or grimacing derisively.

the saucy jackanapes fleered at my credulity

When might flout be a better fit than sneer?

While the synonyms flout and sneer are close in meaning, flout stresses contempt shown by refusal to heed.

flouted the conventions of polite society

Where would gibe be a reasonable alternative to sneer?

The words gibe and sneer are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, gibe implies taunting either good-naturedly or in sarcastic derision.

hooted and gibed at the umpire

When could jeer be used to replace sneer?

The words jeer and sneer can be used in similar contexts, but jeer suggests a coarser more undiscriminating derision.

the crowd jeered at the prisoners

In what contexts can scoff take the place of sneer?

While in some cases nearly identical to sneer, scoff stresses insolence, disrespect, or incredulity as motivating the derision.

scoffed at their concerns

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Time Traveler for sneer

Time Traveler

The first known use of sneer was in 1680

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Cite this Entry

“Sneer.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/sneer. Accessed 22 Oct. 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on sneer

Dictionary: Definition of sneer

Nglish: Translation of sneer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sneer for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sneer

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