English dictionary

Info: This web site is based on WordNet 3.0 from Princeton University.

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.




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.


Similarincomprehensible, uncomprehensible

Antonymscomprehendible, comprehensible

3. obscure difficult to find

SamplesHidden valleys.
A hidden cave.
An obscure retreat.




4. obscure not famous or acclaimed

SamplesAn obscure family.
Unsung heroes of the war.

Synonymsunknown, unsung



5. obscure not drawing attention

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


Similarinconspicuous, invisible


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



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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