Synonym Chooser

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

Some common synonyms of traitorous are disloyal, faithless, false, perfidious, and treacherous. While all these words mean "untrue to what should command one's fidelity or allegiance," traitorous implies either actual treason or a serious betrayal of trust.

traitorous acts punishable by death

Where would disloyal be a reasonable alternative to traitorous?

The words disloyal and traitorous can be used in similar contexts, but disloyal implies a lack of complete faithfulness to a friend, cause, leader, or country.

disloyal to their country

When could faithless be used to replace traitorous?

The words faithless and traitorous are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, faithless applies to any failure to keep a promise or pledge or any breach of allegiance or loyalty.

faithless allies

When is it sensible to use false instead of traitorous?

While in some cases nearly identical to traitorous, false stresses the fact of failing to be true in any manner ranging from fickleness to cold treachery.

betrayed by false friends

How do perfidious and faithless relate to one another, in the sense of traitorous?

Perfidious adds to faithless the implication of an incapacity for fidelity or reliability.

a perfidious double-crosser

In what contexts can treacherous take the place of traitorous?

Although the words treacherous and traitorous have much in common, treacherous implies readiness to betray trust or confidence.

a treacherous adviser

Thesaurus Entries Near traitorous

Cite this Entry

“Traitorous.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 May. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on traitorous

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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