If you want your writing to stand out as excellent, it’s important to have a list of words to use instead of very. The word very, while useful, is overused and inexact, even when paired with another word. You can make your writing stronger by reducing the frequency that you use phrases that begin with the word very. Discover other words for very in this skimmable list. Start with general synonyms for very, then review alternatives to phrases that start with the word very.
There are several words that function as general synonyms for very. They can be paired with other words to form a descriptive phrase.
The word very is often used in front of the term angry. Use one of these words or phrases instead of saying "very angry."
Sometimes the word bad isn't sufficient to convey just how not good something really is. One of these other ways to say "very bad" just might get the point across.
The word beautiful is more intense than pretty, but sometimes it's still not sufficient to capture the degree of beauty. These words go beyond beautiful.
When describing something that is "very big" or large in size, there are a number of appropriate one-word options.
When something is beyond boring, the least you can do is find a more interesting description than the phrase "very boring."
Some things are so bright that the word at least needs a very in front of it. For an even more specific decision, opt for one of these synonyms for "very bright."
When someone takes carefulness to a high level, the individual can be described as "very careful." One of the following words might best describe the person.
There is clean and then there is beyond clean. Consider these words when you're looking for an unambiguous way to describe something as "very clean."
- spic and span
When there is little room for doubt, the phrase "very clear" is a common expression. You may want to instead use one of the options below.
- clear as a bell
- crystal clear
There are varying degrees of cold, from a slight chill to "very cold" to an extreme degree. Consider one of these options.
If something isn't difficult, it's easy. Sometimes it's so simple that you need to clarify that it's easier than easy. Rather than describing something as "very easy," consider one of the terms below.
Some things are a little bit exciting while others are very exciting. Discover single words to convey the upper bounds of that spectrum.
When you're looking to express that something is happening very fast or occurring very quickly, consider one of these terms.
If something is more than just good, it's not unusual to describe it as very good. Or, you could use one of the following words.
Are you looking for a way to express extreme happiness? The words below are good alternatives to simply stating that you're very happy.
Sometimes the temperature is so hot that describing it that way just doesn't get the point across. Consider these options to simply adding very to the word hot.
When you're searching for an alternative to the phrase "very much," one of the terms below may be exactly what you need.
When a sound is so soft that it's below the threshold for very quiet, one might say that it is very quiet. Or, it would also be appropriate to use one of the following terms.
- barely audible
In the phrase "very same," the word very is used as an adjective. Substitute one of these words to clearly convey what you mean.
When something occurs for only a very short period of time, there are a number of words that can convey your precise meaning.
Short is one way that a person or object could be very small. Use one of the following words to precisely communicate what you mean by small.
When you're describing a person or an idea as very smart, you might want to use one of the phrases below.
- highly intelligent
The phrase "very strong" could be used to describe physical strength, a strong belief or opinion, or a scent. Choose an appropriate synonym.
When you're so tired that it's hard to find a word to accurately convey just how very tired you are, consider one of these options.
- worn out
When describing a circumstance in which a person lacks funds to an extreme degree, use one of these words. Each is a synonym for the phrase "very poor."
Are you looking for a more sophisticated way to say "very ugly"? Consider one of these synonyms.
When a person lacks strength to an extreme degree, the individual can be described as "very weak." There are several suitable synonyms for this phrase.
Want a handy guide that lists alternatives to the word very? Print or save the easy-to-use printable list below. That way, you'll have an abbreviated collection of solutions at your fingertips whenever you need it.
Before you choose a different word to use instead of very, you need to decide how you’re using it in a sentence. Very is unusual in that it can be used as an adjective and adverb. Consider which function the word very is serving before you can replace it with something else.
If you’re using very as an adverb, you’re probably describing an adjective. In general, very adds to the intensity of the adjective you are using. Think of these examples:
- She was very beautiful.
- It’s been a very difficult day.
- We had a very good time at the party.
If you’re using very as an adjective, it describes a noun. This way of using very isn’t as common, but it’s still important to consider some alternatives when you can. In general, very means “the exact one," “the fact of” or “without exception,” as you can see in these examples:
- When I opened the front door, I saw the very cat my neighbor had reported as lost.
- Reading his poem touched my very soul.
- I couldn’t believe the very nerve of that student, turning in a paper that was obviously plagiarized.
Avoiding monotonous words like very is one way to sound more intelligent in your writing. The word said also gets overused, and we can help you find different words for said too. Once you’ve removed some overused words, you can also add in great new words that make you sound smart. The end result will be better writing that is much more expressive and effective.