Synonyms & Antonyms of subterfuge

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Frequently Asked Questions About subterfuge

How does the noun subterfuge differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of subterfuge are deception, double-dealing, fraud, and trickery. While all these words mean "the acts or practices of one who deliberately deceives," subterfuge suggests the adoption of a stratagem or the telling of a lie in order to escape guilt or to gain an end.

obtained the papers by subterfuge

When could deception be used to replace subterfuge?

Although the words deception and subterfuge have much in common, deception may or may not imply blameworthiness, since it may suggest cheating or merely tactical resource.

magicians are masters of deception

Where would double-dealing be a reasonable alternative to subterfuge?

The words double-dealing and subterfuge are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, double-dealing suggests treachery or at least action contrary to a professed attitude.

a go-between suspected of double-dealing

When can fraud be used instead of subterfuge?

In some situations, the words fraud and subterfuge are roughly equivalent. However, fraud always implies guilt and often criminality in act or practice.

indicted for fraud

When is trickery a more appropriate choice than subterfuge?

The words trickery and subterfuge can be used in similar contexts, but trickery implies ingenious acts intended to dupe or cheat.

resorted to trickery to gain their ends

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Time Traveler for subterfuge

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The first known use of subterfuge was in 1573

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Cite this Entry

“Subterfuge.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jul. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on subterfuge

Nglish: Translation of subterfuge for Spanish Speakers


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