English dictionary



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English adjective: obscure

1. obscure not clearly understood or expressed


SamplesAn obscure turn of phrase.
An impulse to go off and fight certain obscure battles of his own spirit.
Their descriptions of human behavior become vague, dull, and unclear.
Vague...forms of speech...have so long passed for mysteries of science.


Synonymsvague


Similarunclear


Antonymsclear

2. obscure marked by difficulty of style or expression


SamplesMuch that was dark is now quite clear to me.
Those who do not appreciate Kafka's work say his style is obscure.


Synonymsdark


Similarincomprehensible, uncomprehensible


Antonymscomprehendible, comprehensible

3. obscure difficult to find


SamplesHidden valleys.
A hidden cave.
An obscure retreat.


Synonymshidden


Similarconcealed


Antonymsunconcealed

4. obscure not famous or acclaimed


SamplesAn obscure family.
Unsung heroes of the war.


Synonymsunknown, unsung


Similaringlorious


Antonymsglorious

5. obscure not drawing attention


SamplesAn unnoticeable cigarette burn on the carpet.
An obscure flaw.


Synonymsunnoticeable


Similarinconspicuous, invisible


Antonymsconspicuous

6. obscure remote and separate physically or socially


SamplesExisted over the centuries as a world apart.
Preserved because they inhabited a place apart.
Tiny isolated villages remote from centers of civilization.
An obscure village.


Synonymsapart, isolated


Similarunconnected


Antonymsconnected


English verb: obscure

1. obscure (perception) make less visible or unclear


SamplesThe stars are obscured by the clouds.
The big elm tree obscures our view of the valley.


Synonymsbecloud, befog, cloud, fog, haze over, mist, obnubilate


Pattern of useSomething ----s something


Broader (hypernym)conceal, hide


Narrower (hyponym)overshadow

2. obscure (cognition) make unclear, indistinct, or blurred


SamplesHer remarks confused the debate.
Their words obnubilate their intentions.


Synonymsblur, confuse, obnubilate


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something


Broader (hypernym)alter, change, modify


Narrower (hyponym)muddy


Verb groupconfound, confuse

3. obscure (change) make obscure or unclear


SamplesThe distinction was obscured.


Synonymsbedim, overcloud


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something


Broader (hypernym)alter, change, modify

4. obscure (change) reduce a vowel to a neutral one, such as a schwa


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something


Broader (hypernym)reduce


Domain categorylinguistics

5. obscure (change) make undecipherable or imperceptible by obscuring or concealing


SamplesA hidden message.
A veiled threat.


Synonymsblot out, hide, obliterate, veil


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something


Broader (hypernym)alter, change, modify


Narrower (hyponym)mystify


Verb groupefface, obliterate









Based on WordNet 3.0 copyright © Princeton University.
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