Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

Comprehensive
Dictionary Suite
Help
Help
Help
 
Advanced Dictionary    
Display options
 
Lookup History
subtle

sub·tle

subtle

 
 
pronunciation:
suh tl
features:
Word Combinations (adjective)
part of speech: adjective
inflections: subtler, subtlest
definition 1: difficult to detect or define; elusive or ambiguous.
There was subtle change in her son's attitude that only she noticed.He likes a subtle flavor of garlic in food, but he doesn't care for garlic when it's overpowering.
synonyms:
elusive, fine
antonyms:
broad, dominant, dramatic, obvious, startling, unsubtle
similar words:
ambiguous, delicate, imperceptible, light, nice, soft
definition 2: causing delicate effects, or able to make fine distinctions.
a subtle colora subtle interpretation
synonyms:
delicate, discriminating
antonyms:
startling, unsubtle
similar words:
fine, muted, nice, refined, soft
definition 3: characterized by or requiring skill, ingenuity, or discernment.
a subtle wita subtle strategy
synonyms:
astute, delicate, fine, keen
antonyms:
blunt, unsubtle
similar words:
deft, discerning, discriminating, ingenious, nice, refined, sharp, sophisticated
definition 4: cunning, sly, or insidious.
a subtle tempter
synonyms:
artful, crafty, cunning, foxy, wily
antonyms:
unsubtle
similar words:
designing, devious, indirect, insidious, shifty, slick, sly, tricky, underhanded
Word CombinationsSubscriber feature About this feature
derivations: subtly (adv.), subtleness (n.)