Definition of Antonym along with Their Categorization

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To put it simply, the definition of antonym is often referred to the exact opposite of certain word. Why you need to understand about antonym? There are several reasons why deep understanding of antonym is required. Antonym is often used in order to describe something. Deep understanding of antonym allows you to understand the exact opposite of a word. It allows you to give a better description of something. In this article, we are not only going to discuss about the definition of it, but also the categorization as well. In order to understand it better, we also going to learn some examples from their respective category.

Definition of Antonym

Category and Definition of Antonym

Antonym can be found in different application. The common application is to describe something. It is also used to explain the condition of specific thing as well. Before talking about the definition of antonym, it is also important that antonym of particular word might come in any forms. Antonym is dominated in verb form. It is easy to find out the exact opposite of particular verb. Since verb is often associated with activity related to it, you can easily guess the opposite of this activity.

Aside from verb, antonym might take form of adjective as well. As mentioned before, antonym allows you to describe anything better. There is no other way to describe something accurately aside from using adjective. By using the suitable antonym, you can get diverse vocabulary of adjective to describe something. We are going to talk about this definition of antonyms and examples later. You also need to know that antonym is not only limited in form of verb and adjective as well, but also noun. However, noun with exact opposite meaning is not as much as it goes with verb or adjective.

Previously, we talk about the definition of antonym. Due to the diverse amount of antonym, it is categorized into three important types. Those types are including graded antonym, complementary antonym, and relational antonym. Here are the further explanations about those categories.

Graded antonym involves a measurement that stretched between two opposite words. Between two opposite words, there is something in between them. Each of those words is on the extreme sides. Here are the definition of antonyms and examples on this category. One good example is light >< dark. Between this light intensity, there is something in between. The middle ground between them makes them categorized under graded antonym. The same condition goes for fast >< slow, long >< short, big >< small, and many more. As you can see, all of them are in form of adjective.

Another definition of antonyms and examples that we are going to talk is complementary antonym. Unlike the graded antonym, complementary antonym does not have middle ground between them. Therefore, those words are in the exact opposite. Some examples of those words are man >< woman, day >< night, true >< false, and many more. Complementary antonym also comes in form of noun aside from adverb.

In order to understand the definition of antonym, you also need to understand about the relational antonym. Some people consider rational antonym as part of complementary antonym. However, some experts separate them into two different categories. As it goes with complementary antonym, both of them do not have middle ground. However, they have to be in the same context. Therefore, you might found them in the same sentence without giving greater sense of opposite meaning. For instance, you can use seller >< buyer in the same sentence. The same condition also applies for teacher >< student. The example list of this antonym category expands. Most of them are in form of noun.

READ: Definition of synonym and its examples

It is also important that you need to use specific prefix in order to create the exact opposite meaning of a word. Prefix such as in-, un-, and non- are the common prefix used to create opposite words. Keep in mind that it can only be used for specific words. The examples of this category include sufficient >< insufficient, fortunate >< unfortunate, existence >< nonexistence, and many more. In the beginning, finding the exact opposite of a word is tricky. However, after you learn about the definition of antonym along with their categorization, you can define the antonym easier.


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