Synonym Chooser

How does the adjective venerable differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of venerable are ancient, antiquated, antique, archaic, obsolete, and old. While all these words mean "having come into existence or use in the more or less distant past," venerable stresses the impressiveness and dignity of great age.

the family's venerable patriarch

When might ancient be a better fit than venerable?

While in some cases nearly identical to venerable, ancient applies to occurrence, existence, or use in or survival from the distant past.

ancient accounts of dragons

In what contexts can antiquated take the place of venerable?

The synonyms antiquated and venerable are sometimes interchangeable, but antiquated implies being discredited or outmoded or otherwise inappropriate to the present time.

antiquated teaching methods

When is antique a more appropriate choice than venerable?

The meanings of antique and venerable largely overlap; however, antique applies to what has come down from a former or ancient time.

collected antique Chippendale furniture

When would archaic be a good substitute for venerable?

While the synonyms archaic and venerable are close in meaning, archaic implies having the character or characteristics of a much earlier time.

the play used archaic language to convey a sense of period

Where would obsolete be a reasonable alternative to venerable?

In some situations, the words obsolete and venerable are roughly equivalent. However, obsolete may apply to something regarded as no longer acceptable or useful even though it is still in existence.

a computer that makes earlier models obsolete

When could old be used to replace venerable?

The words old and venerable can be used in similar contexts, but old may apply to either actual or merely relative length of existence.

old houses
an old sweater of mine

Thesaurus Entries Near venerable

Cite this Entry

“Venerable.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Oct. 2023.

More from Merriam-Webster on venerable

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