Synonyms & Antonyms of sport

(Entry 1 of 2)

2 an attitude or manner not to be taken seriously
  • teasing that began in sport ended with some hateful words being exchanged

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3 the making of unkind jokes as a way of showing one's scorn for someone or something
  • taught their children that it was not polite to make sport of others

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4 a person or thing that is made fun of
  • had become the long-suffering sport of the village

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Synonyms & Antonyms of sport (Entry 2 of 2)

1 to engage in activity for amusement
  • from sailing to snorkeling, each day we sported at a different activity offered by the beach resort

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2 to play and run about happily
  • the millionaire's grandchildren sporting on the estate's spacious grounds

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3 to present so as to invite notice or attention
  • sported his flashy new car by driving it all over town

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Frequently Asked Questions About sport

How does the noun sport differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of sport are fun, game, jest, and play. While all these words mean "action or speech that provides amusement or arouses laughter," sport applies especially to the arousing of laughter against someone.

teasing begun in sport led to anger

When is fun a more appropriate choice than sport?

The synonyms fun and sport are sometimes interchangeable, but fun usually implies laughter or gaiety but may imply merely a lack of serious or ulterior purpose.

played cards just for fun

How are the words game and sport related?

Game is close to sport, and often stresses mischievous or malicious fun.

made game of their poor relations

Where would jest be a reasonable alternative to sport?

The meanings of jest and sport largely overlap; however, jest implies lack of earnestness and may suggest a hoaxing or teasing.

hurt by remarks said only in jest

When can play be used instead of sport?

In some situations, the words play and sport are roughly equivalent. However, play stresses the opposition to earnest without implying any malice or mischief.

pretended to strangle his brother in play

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Time Traveler for sport

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The first known use of sport was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Sport.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Oct. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on sport

Nglish: Translation of sport for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sport for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about sport


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