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Synonym Chooser

How does the verb use contrast with its synonyms?

The words employ and utilize are common synonyms of use. While all three words mean "to put into service especially to attain an end," use implies availing oneself of something as a means or instrument to an end.

willing to use any means to achieve her ends

Where would employ be a reasonable alternative to use?

Although the words employ and use have much in common, employ suggests the use of a person or thing that is available but idle, inactive, or disengaged.

looking for better ways to employ their skills

When is it sensible to use utilize instead of use?

While in some cases nearly identical to use, utilize may suggest the discovery of a new, profitable, or practical use for something.

an old wooden bucket utilized as a planter

Thesaurus Entries Near use

Cite this Entry

“Use.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

More from Merriam-Webster on use

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