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Published: Wednesday, 22 June, 2016 9:00 AM
A synonym is a different word that means the same thing, such as big/ huge/ large. An antonym is a different word that means the opposite of the thing, such as, strong- weak/ feeble. Synonyms and Antonyms play a crucial role in enriching one’s vocabulary because essentially they give offer several substitutes of a particular word.
1. Prevent monotony
Synonyms and Antonyms prevent monotony. Using the same words repeatedly makes the language boring and monotonous. Using different words to substitute a particular word will help you to break monotony and capture the interest of the audience easily. Especially in oration, it is important to have a good vocabulary to impress the audience.
2. Aids understanding
Not only does the knowledge of synonyms and antonyms add to the vocabulary, but they enable the process of meaning making. Knowing limited number of words hampers your understanding of what you hear or read, if synonyms and antonyms of those words appear. Whereas by learning many words for the same word, you would have built a wider vocabulary bank and covered all possible substitutes of a word.
Synonyms and antonyms help in expressing yourself well. Synonyms and antonyms, often, are not exact substitutes or opposites of a word. There may be slight variation in the sense of synonyms and antonyms. If you know different words that describe the same thing but in a slightly different way, you can chose the best word to use. You will be able to communicate the precise message you intend to communicate. For instance, the words accept, welcome, gain all mean the same, in a sense, that is, to receive. But there are slight differences present, despite them being synonyms.
Accept- He accepted the book as a present.
Welcome - I welcome you to my house.
Gain- He gained entry into the house within 5 minutes.
Thus, knowing which words to use when, help you to communicate precisely, without losing your intended meaning.
4. Provide options
Knowing different words for the same thing can help you use language effectively according to different situations. For instance, you can use ‘mess up’ in an informal conversation but for formal setting, ‘mistake’ or ‘error’ is more appropriate. Again, the meaning of ‘mess up’, ‘mistake’ and ‘error’ is the same but their application varies.
Synonyms and antonyms make language effective and interesting. A person who knows multiple words to replace a single word will, most likely, have a strong vocabulary. Vocabulary is a bank of words that a person possesses. There will be a limited number of new words that a person can learn in his/ her lifetime, however, the person can increase his/ her vocabulary bank by learning synonyms and antonyms of those words. For instance, a sentence such as, ‘Aamir is a well- known actor’ can be written as ‘Aamir is famous’, ‘Aamir is popular’, ‘Aamir is celebrated actor.’ Famous, popular and celebrated are all synonyms of well- being. This just shows how synonyms and antonyms can enrich vocabulary and make language delivery that much more effective.
Thus, synonyms and antonyms enhance vocabulary and enrich one’s language
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