Synonym Chooser

How does the verb suffuse differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of suffuse are imbue, infuse, ingrain, inoculate, and leaven. While all these words mean "to introduce one thing into another so as to affect it throughout," suffuse implies a spreading through of something that gives an unusual color or quality.

a room suffused with light

When might imbue be a better fit than suffuse?

The meanings of imbue and suffuse largely overlap; however, imbue implies the introduction of a quality that fills and permeates the whole being.

imbue students with intellectual curiosity

When is it sensible to use infuse instead of suffuse?

The words infuse and suffuse can be used in similar contexts, but infuse implies a pouring in of something that gives new life or significance.

new members infused enthusiasm into the club

Where would ingrain be a reasonable alternative to suffuse?

The words ingrain and suffuse are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, ingrain, used only in the passive or past participle, suggests the deep implanting of a quality or trait.

clung to ingrained habits

When can inoculate be used instead of suffuse?

In some situations, the words inoculate and suffuse are roughly equivalent. However, inoculate implies an imbuing or implanting with a germinal idea and often suggests stealth or subtlety.

an electorate inoculated with dangerous ideas

When is leaven a more appropriate choice than suffuse?

While in some cases nearly identical to suffuse, leaven implies introducing something that enlivens, tempers, or markedly alters the total quality.

a serious play leavened with comic moments


Thesaurus Entries Near suffuse

Cite this Entry

“Suffuse.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

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