Thesaurus

tenacious

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of tenacious

2 tending to adhere to objects upon contact
  • you'll have a devil of a time getting those tenacious burrs off of your wool sweater

Synonyms for tenacious

Words Related to tenacious

Near Antonyms for tenacious

Antonyms for tenacious

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About tenacious

How is the word tenacious different from other adjectives like it?

Some common synonyms of tenacious are stalwart, stout, strong, sturdy, and tough. While all these words mean "showing power to resist or to endure," tenacious suggests strength in seizing, retaining, clinging to, or holding together.

tenacious farmers clinging to an age-old way of life

When is it sensible to use stalwart instead of tenacious?

The words stalwart and tenacious are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, stalwart suggests an unshakable dependability.

stalwart environmentalists

When might stout be a better fit than tenacious?

While in some cases nearly identical to tenacious, stout suggests an ability to endure stress, pain, or hard use without giving way.

stout hiking boots

In what contexts can strong take the place of tenacious?

In some situations, the words strong and tenacious are roughly equivalent. However, strong may imply power derived from muscular vigor, large size, structural soundness, intellectual or spiritual resources.

strong arms

the defense has a strong case

When would sturdy be a good substitute for tenacious?

The meanings of sturdy and tenacious largely overlap; however, sturdy implies strength derived from vigorous growth, determination of spirit, solidity of construction.

a sturdy table

people of sturdy independence

When is tough a more appropriate choice than tenacious?

Although the words tough and tenacious have much in common, tough implies great firmness and resiliency.

a tough political opponent

Learn More About tenacious

Time Traveler for tenacious

Time Traveler

The first known use of tenacious was in 1607

See more words from the same year

Listen to Our Podcast About tenacious

Thesaurus Entries Near tenacious

tenable

tenacious

tenaciousness

See More Nearby Entries 

Cite this Entry

“Tenacious.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/tenacious. Accessed 16 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on tenacious

Nglish: Translation of tenacious for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tenacious for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Which Word Does Not Belong?

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!