Synonyms & Antonyms of submit

1 to cease resistance (as to another's arguments, demands, or control)
  • in the end he submitted and agreed to take that awful-tasting medicine

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2 to give up and cease resistance (as to a liking, temptation, or habit)
  • refusing to submit to sleep, she stayed by her son's hospital bed the whole night

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3 to yield to the control or power of enemy forces
  • the fort's commander received orders not to submit under any circumstances, as reinforcements were on the way

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See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About submit

How does the verb submit differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of submit are capitulate, defer, relent, succumb, and yield. While all these words mean "to give way to someone or something that one can no longer resist," submit suggests full surrendering after resistance or conflict to the will or control of another.

a repentant sinner vowing to submit to the will of God

When could capitulate be used to replace submit?

The words capitulate and submit are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, capitulate stresses the fact of ending all resistance and may imply either a coming to terms (as with an adversary) or hopelessness in the face of an irresistible opposing force.

officials capitulated to the protesters' demands

When is it sensible to use defer instead of submit?

The words defer and submit can be used in similar contexts, but defer implies a voluntary yielding or submitting out of respect or reverence for or deference and affection toward another.

I defer to your expertise in these matters

When is relent a more appropriate choice than submit?

While in some cases nearly identical to submit, relent implies a yielding through pity or mercy by one who holds the upper hand.

finally relented and let the children stay up late

When might succumb be a better fit than submit?

Although the words succumb and submit have much in common, succumb implies weakness and helplessness to the one that gives way or an overwhelming power to the opposing force.

a stage actor succumbing to the lure of Hollywood

When would yield be a good substitute for submit?

The meanings of yield and submit largely overlap; however, yield may apply to any sort or degree of giving way before force, argument, persuasion, or entreaty.

yields too easily in any argument

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Time Traveler for submit

Time Traveler

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

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Cite this Entry

“Submit.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Aug. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on submit

Nglish: Translation of submit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of submit for Arabic Speakers


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