Tips to learn Antonyms, Synonyms, and Homonyms

How to prepare Antonyms, Synonyms, and Homonyms for competitive exams?

English has become an integral part of the modern world today and hence; it is very important for an individual to at least learn to speak and write basic English. Every competitive exam that is there in the educational market has English as a mandatory language. In this article, we will learn about antonyms, synonyms, and homonyms. Learning them will help you to score better.


Synonyms are words that are similar or have similar meaning of another word. Basic idea behind using synonyms is to avoid repetitive words when it comes to writing. Therefore, if you are aware of various synonyms, it becomes easier for you to write a particular piece. Also, sometimes the word that you are looking for may not be the appropriate word, which is where a synonym comes handy to interpret the exact meaning of your words.


Antonyms are words that are opposite in meaning to another word. For instance, the antonym of ‘small’ will be ‘big’. The idea behind using antonyms is to enhance your vocabulary and improve your writing skills. You can always look for antonyms of a particular word in order to understand its meaning better.  Primary focus of understanding a particular word is to improve your skills in English that will help you prepare for your exam.

Read more: Tips & Tricks to do last-minute Exam Preparation

Let us understand synonyms and antonyms with the help of some examples:

Sr No. Word Synonym Antonym
1 Awareness Acumen, Brilliance Stupidity, Ignorance
2 Abolish Comply, Observe Condemn, Disjoin
3 Awkward Rude, Blundering Adroit, Clever
4 Base Vulgar, Coarse Summit, Noble
5 Barrier Barricade, Obstacle Link, Assistance
6 Bind Predicament Release
7 Busy Active, Engaged Idle, Lazy
8 Capable Competent, Able Incompetent, Inept
9 Cease Terminate, Desist Begin, Originate
10 Compassion Kindness, Sympathy Cruelty, Barbarity
11 Confident Bold, Undaunted Different, Cowardly
12 Courtesy Generosity, Reverence Disdain, Rudeness
13 Creation Formation, Foundation Destruction
14 Decay Collapse, Decompose Flourish, Progress
15 Decipher Interpret, Revel Misinterpret, Distort
16 Deliberate Cautious, Intentional Rash, Sudden
17 Demolish Ruin, Devastate Repair, Construct
18 Deprive Despoil, Divest Restore, Renew
19 Denounce Blame Boycott Defend
20 Destructive Catastrophic, Pernicious Creative, Constructive

These are some of the basic words that are used in our day-to-day lives while speaking in English. The best way to put them in practice is by using them in your sentences.

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Now, we come to the next part which is Homonyms;


Homonyms are words with similar spelling and pronunciation but different meanings and origins. These words are important to understand because words that look alike can have different meanings. It is very important to pay attention to the context of a sentence that you are reading in order to avoid misinterpretations of what is being said because of homonyms.

Let us understand the same with the help of few examples:

Sr No. Word Meaning 1 Meaning 2
1 Atmosphere The gases surrounding the earth The mood of the situation
2 Bail To clear out water To release a prisoner
3 Band A ring A musical group
4 Beat To overcome something To feel exhausted
5 Capital The chief city of a state A crime punishable by death
6 Cleave To split or sever To adhere to
7 Dive To go down quickly An unpleasant place
8 Employ To put in use To hire someone for a job
9 File To store computer data To make a formal request
10 Fine Being of high quality Sum of money as penalty
11 Grave Something very serious A place to bury the dead
12 Hide To keep something secret The skin of an animal
13 Iron To press or smooth Silvery gray material
14 Jade A hard, green stone A hardened or bad-tempered woman
15 Lark A small bird Something done for fun
16 Objective Not being influenced by prejudice The lens of a microscope or a camera
17 Plaque An ornamental plate A deposit of teeth prone to bacteria
18 Refrain To stop oneself from doing something A repeated line in music or poetry
19 Reticule At a distance or disconnected Unlikely possibility
20 Tender Sensitive or painful to touch Soft food

Important Note: Homonyms are not to be confused with homophones or homographs. Homographs are words with the same spelling but with different meaning and pronunciation. Homophones are words with the same pronunciation but with different meanings and spellings.


The more you practice these words, the better are your chances to crack the exam in English. As we all know, there is no shortcut to success and as the famous saying goes, ‘practice makes a man perfect’ should be followed if you really want to ace in your examination.

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